From rags to riches: Indian designer finds sustainable way to create haute couture


NEW DELHI, November 4 (Reuters) – An Indian designer is using scraps of discarded fabric to assemble fashionable clothing for men and women as a sustainable alternative to high-end clothing.

New Delhi-based Kriti Tula fashion label Doodlage collects scraps of fabric from scrapped factories for minor defects and assembles them to create flowy dresses and sarees, selling them for around $ 100 each.

Tula said the brand, which includes a men’s line that includes patchwork shirts with denim bands, was born out of its concern for global warming and the fashion industry’s impact on the environment.

Having worked in large textile export houses, the designer said she saw first-hand the environmental cost of high fashion: wasted fabric and water, and toxins emitted during the production process.

“Everything we wear has an impact on everything we eat, consume and breathe,” Tula told Reuters in his workshop in the capital.

The estimated $ 2.4 trillion global fashion industry accounts for 8-10% of the world’s carbon emissions – more than all international flights and shipping combined, according to the United Nations Program for environment said in 2019.

Industry is also the second largest consumer of water, generating around 20% of the world’s wastewater, he added.

Tula said sourcing the waste was initially complex and the prices for the products had to be higher than many buyers might have thought it was worth paying for recycled clothing.

Gradually, however, her company found like-minded suppliers and partners, she said.

Besides clothing, his brand also makes soft toys, bags, handbags and paper from scraps of fabric.

Report by Sunil Kataria in New Delhi; Writing by Shilpa Jamkhandikar; Editing by Karishma Singh

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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