It's exciting when you discover innovative fashion concepts which not only challenge the ethics of the industry but create visually pleasing aesthetics to boot.
Junky Styling, Hackney
Founded by designer duo Annika Sanders and Kerry Seager, Junky Styling has been an established sustainable fashion brand since 1997. Operating on a number of different creative levels, they offer a unique Wardrobe Surgery for people to bring their own clothing in to be transformed into some Junky couture as well as producing a Ready-to-Wear collection, off the peg garments and a bespoke service. The creastions have been affectionately dubbed 'an eccentrically chic line of mutant couture' by The New Yorker and 'high fashion street couture' by Vogue.
Junky Styling champions the sustainable message of upcycling and said: "All items are created from either post or pre consumer stock which is cut up and reworked. The recycling of textiles into upcycled garments is what makes us sustainable. We create style that outlasts seasons while still managing to retain the original ethos of individuality off the peg."
Inside the Junky Styling shop in Hackney
The unique garments which fill the Hackney shop are made up of material from numerous sources. As well as renovated, high quality second-hand clothing they utilise excess stock from labels, decommissioned army surplus and surplus from textile merchants and pickers across the country.
An example of their celebrated Wardrobe Surgery saw them turn 85 silk bow ties, previously owned by a client's father, into the interior of a cape. "It is a truly amazing piece that fitted the remit of having her dad close to her but without everyone knowing, until the cape came off that was!" said Kerry. She also adds that her dream Wardrobe Surgery would have been reworking the late Princess Diana's wedding dress into something Kate could have worn.
As founder members of the Ethical Fashion Forum, the brand aligns with Oxfam's reuse, recycle and resell philosophy aiming to combat the 1.4 million tonnes of textile waste sent to landfill each year. They said: "I think sustainable fashion is the only future and, with the help of tomorrow's generation of designers being exposed to so much information on sustainability, knowledge is key to change."
A selection of the Junky Styling clothing range
Having forged upcycling into a career, when it comes to getting crafty with clothing, Junky Styling are experts. Their advice is: "identify your own style, what cuts you like and what suits you and then get confident with the scissors! Initially, it's all about how your pieces look on the outside, so don't feel pressurised to reach perfection in the first attempt. Begin with tweaking pieces first and save the transforming for a little further down the line."
After 15 years in business, and many more to come, Junky Styling are in the midst of a rebrand. With promises of exciting offers, keep an eye on this exciting ethical brand in the future.