WHAT IT IS: A trip to Southeast Asia to film part of a documentary about the fashion system of today. THEFASHIONSUBJECT is a non-profit exploratory research created by WEAR.
WHO I AM: Salomé Areias, a 29 year-old fashion trend analyst and teacher based in Lisbon. I will bring along my boyfriend, best friend for life, innovation specialist and photographer, Miguel Sousa. This is one of the projects of WEAR, the start-up I launched last year to guide small-scale fashion designers to create sustainable value. You can also find it on facebook.
HOW IT WORKS: The research will be carried out through interviews and participant observation of fashion students, teachers, consumers, designers, producers, laborers, and everyone who is involved that is worth talking to.
WHY: Southeast Asia has the biggest clothing and textile industries in the world.
WHAT WE NEED: Funding for the flights. If you have reserves on giving money, we are also looking for sponsors for lodging (if you have an hostel, or maybe you know someone that live near by), filming equipment (a small camera and a clip-on microfone), and travelling equipment (2 backpacks, 2 hiking boots, and 2 sleeping bags). We are also accepting any advice you have to give us about our research and our trip. Please feel free to write.
WHAT WE OFFER: Apart from the reward, every single help from 1$ to a drinking bottle will be referred in the documentary.
The fashion system, as we know it today, hides a lot of vicious inevitabilities in its own economic model. First, the infinite cycle of exploitation (consumers, manpower, small designers, technology, and planet resources). Second, the lack of design thinking and disregard for consumers . And third, its unsustainability in a long-term scenario.
Yes, it is not sustainable and it is going to collapse as soon as it fails to find where to get more profit from.
THEFASHIONSUBJECT is actually a research project about the fashion subject itself, that is teached at fashion schools to the upcoming fashion designers. I want to give them the power to build a better future.
My name is Salomé Areias, a worried fashion trend analyst and teacher trying to find a better creative process for fashion, as well as a better methodology to teach fashion students to be better designers. But how?
I believe that, for that purpose, it is absolutely imperative to unveil all the needs, all the ambitions, and all the limitations of every single wheel of this system. In other words, I want to understand, empathetically, how we could possibly rearrange a new sustainable, inclusive, ethical, and wealthy fashion system!
THEFASHIONSUBJECT research has already started on the winding paths of Portugal’s clothing industry (that used to be one of the greatest assets and now is immersed in a deep economic and creative crisis) and it is meant to become a documentary by the end of all research in 2016.
In a second phase, arround March 2015, the research will continue in India, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia (idealy, probably adding some small trips near by) to understand the needs and cultural context of those that depend on the clothing industry (producers, laborers, artisans, general population) and of the fashion schools, new generation of designers and enterpreneurs. China can also be relevant, as they recently beated out Americans as the biggest fashion consumers.
In a third phase, it will focus on the Northern Europe (Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Belgium, and Netherlands), due to their visionary methods of teaching and aheadness in design creative processes.
This funding is only assigned to the second phase. Let us see what the future holds :)
*All pictures in this post are authored by my sister, exceptional doctor, traveller, and amateur photographer, Ágata Areias.