When it comes to the world of ethical and sustainable fashion, the two titans – Carry Somers and Orsola de Castro – have truly revolutionized the industry. Together, they initiated Fashion Revolution, a global campaign urging fashion brands to demonstrate transparency in their supply chains. Their invaluable contributions have already transformed the eco-friendly fashion realm, and there’s so much more to learn about them. Here are 10 things you might not know about Carry Somers and Orsola de Castro.

1. They Co-founded Fashion Revolution Following a Major Tragedy

Carry Somers and Orsola de Castro were inspired to take action after the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh, which claimed the lives of 1134 garment workers in 2013. They realized the dire need for drastic change in the global fashion industry and for brands to be held accountable for their actions and operating conditions.

To address this crisis, they started Fashion Revolution, a movement aimed at advocating for ethical and safe labor practices in the fashion industry. This tragic event sparked Somers and de Castro’s unwavering dedication to improving working conditions and ensuring fashion industry accountability worldwide.

2. They Possess Diverse Prior Experiences in Fashion

Before becoming renowned advocates for ethical fashion, both women led successful careers with different focus areas in the industry.

Carry Somers, a social entrepreneur, focused her work on traditional hat-making techniques in South America, launching Pachacuti, a sustainable hat company that celebrated indigenous artistry. Orsola de Castro, on the other hand, was a designer who specialized in upcycling; using surplus and off-cut materials to create high-end fashion, through her innovative brand From Somewhere.

3. They Influence Policy at a Global Level

Through Fashion Revolution, Somers and de Castro have emerged as leaders in influencing fashion-related policies.

Their campaign actively engages policymakers around the globe, pushing for more stringent regulations regarding labor rights, environmental impact, transparency, and brand accountability. By providing comprehensive data on the industry’s shortcomings, they enable lawmakers to make informed decisions regarding future regulations and legislation.

4. They Advocate for Transparency

Transparency forms a key cornerstone of their work. Both Carry and Orsola believe that increasing transparency across supply chains is essential to fostering ethical and sustainable practices in the fashion industry.

Fashion Revolution’s Fashion Transparency Index serves as a tangible example of this, rating major brands based on their level of transparency. This tool encourages brands to disclose their supply chain details and sets a new standard in the industry.

5. They Are Constant Educators

Beyond being activists, Somers and de Castro are also dedicated educators. They use various platforms, including social media, public events, and their Fashion Revolution website, to educate people about the importance of responsible consumption.

Carry and Orsola help their audience understand the environmental impact and human rights implications of their buying decisions, fostering more informed consumers and promoters of sustainable fashion.

6. They Foster a Collaborative Community

Somers and de Castro champion openness and inclusivity, welcoming diverse voices into their movement. They’ve built a global network of volunteers, supporters, educators, and researchers all committed to fostering ethical practices.

They regularly host fashion events, such as the annual Fashion Revolution Week, engaging participants in thoughtful conversations, awareness campaigns, and encouraging a collective pursuit towards better industry standards.

7. They Are Acclaimed Authors

In addition to their advocacy work, Somers and de Castro are accomplished authors. They’ve written for various publications, sharing their insights and promoting ethical practices in fashion.

Their book, ‘Fashion Revolution: Loved Clothes Last’, explores the environmental impact of the fashion industry, the benefits of ethical purchasing, and the importance of loving and caring for our clothes for longer.

8. They Encourage Conscious Consumerism

They push for a paradigm shift from fast fashion consumption to a more mindful, ethical approach. They urge consumers to buy less, buy better, and most importantly, ask themselves, “Who made my clothes?”

By sparking critical engagement with clothing purchases, they facilitate the growth of conscious consumerism, empowering individuals to demand fair trade, ethical sourcing, and sustainable business practices.

9. They Nurture Future Leaders

Somers and de Castro prioritize mentorship and nurturing the next generation of ethical fashion advocates. They provide young enthusiasts with a platform to voice, learn, and mobilize, truly living their values of inclusivity and cooperation.

Through their industry-changing initiatives, they inspire countless individuals to drive meaningful change and contribute towards a sustainable future for fashion.

10. They Emphasize the Importance of Accountability

For Carry and Orsola, accountability is pivotal in transforming the fashion industry. They believe that fashion brands should be held responsible for their environmental footprint and treatment of workers.

Using tools like the Fashion Transparency Index, they keep brands accountable and remind us that together, we can make a major impact and reshape the world of fashion as we know it.

Fashion Revolution official website
Carry Somer’s Hat company – Pachacuti
Orsola de Castro’s Upcycling Brand – From Somewhere