Who doesn't want awesome, organic tee-shirts with illustrations of dorks, animals, robots and skulls? I know I do...
Karl Addison, designer and artist, started Partybots "out of a love of clothing and art that would break the norm", and that he did. In 2003, Karl gave two friends tee-shirts with Robots on them. Obviously, this was magical, and the rest is history. His humor and warmth penetrate even the website. Check it out!
"The colors, placement, effects and more continually evolve, the end result being work that’s always one-of-a-kind—even when it’s reproduced. All of my printing, painting and production is done in-house by me. This allows me to use a variety of media—clothing, bags, books, posters, textiles—and easily create custom work." - Karl Addison
He uses soy inks, water-based glues, organic and eco-blend apparel, and low-impact color-dyeing. Who needs Urban Outfitters (with their right-wing President) when we have people like Karl Addison making original clothing-art? Karl is certainly a Discerning Brute. Thumbs up.
"One of the most staggering disasters of the twentieth century" - UN official statement about the conventional cotton industry.
I've had a lot of people ask me recently, "whats wrong with cotton? It's a plant!". When I think of cotton, I imagine tucking my knees up under a soft tee-shirt, white cotton-candy-puffs growing in a field, and those incredibly melodramatic "cotton, the fabric of our lives" commercials. Whose lives are they referring to? Ours? When we look more closely, we'll see that the fabric of many peoples' lives is falling apart due to that fibrous, little cloud-like plant.
Gentlemen, the switch to organic cotton we see happening in so many clothing lines is not just a hip trend or buzz-word to sell products. I do not believe it is a passing fad either. 'Organics' is here to stay - and for good reason. Organic, fair-trade cotton has some real legitimacy when the social and ecological devastation caused by conventional cotton industry is considered. Toxic dust from pesticides and thirsty plants are destroying aquatic ecosystems and causing TB and cancer-rates to skyrocket in Uzbekistan. The social injustices have even led to murdered cotton laborers, who were shot by state security in 2005 while protesting their treatment. Educate yourselves (it's sexy).
Did you know:
- Uzbekistan is the second-largest exporter of cotton in the world
- It takes about 530 gallons of water to produce 1 tee-shirt
- The Aral Sea, once the world's fourth largest inland lake, providing the region with fish and water, has shrunk to 15% of its original size due to cotton production
- Up to one third of Uzbekistan's workforce is made to labour on cotton farms; denied ownership of the land they work, and forced to labour without reasonable wages
- In Uzbekistan, laborers are unable to opt out of cotton cultivation -- those who try are subject to violence, imprisonment and intimidation
- Much of the cotton comes from child labor
Watch this video:
DB 's Etiquette Recommendation: Read labels and take responsibility for how you vote with your dollar. Refuse to buy cotton products coming from socially and environmentally destructive situations. Spread the word and support fair-trade and organic products.