“Sustainability became an important part of my life after giving birth to my daughter. For the first time ever I was worried about the kind of world we were leaving behind for my little girl,” says Victoria Onken, sustainable fashion blogger of Styleme.green
“I believe that there’s a direct relationship between our inner-world, our environment and our appearance. I don’t think you can be happy if these three are not aligned.”
Becoming sustainably aware is triggered reliantly on the birth of Victoria Onken’s daughter. “I knew the only way I could start to make a difference was to live differently and make conscious choices about the impact of products that I bought on the environment.”
She speaks of her memorable project that drove her current motivation to sustainable design focuses, “a journey of trying not to buy anything for a year.” During her participation in this project ‘365dayswithoutshopping’, she progressed her passion for fashion ethics as she learned how to recycle and the backgrounds on sustainability.
“I discovered that there are numerous designers making sustainable clothes to suit all tastes. This was perfect for me as sustainability is important but as a woman in her mid-thirties who is style conscious, it was also critical that I could experiment with different styles without being forced into dressing a certain way due to lack of choice. This is when I couldn’t wait any longer and embarked on a new adventure, the sustainable fashion blog.”
As the market and consumers become more and more reliant on bloggers and magazines for style decisions and fashion senses, Victoria states that “Readers want to be a part of the community where they not only looking at products but feel like they belong to ideologically and emotionally. Popular authentic blogs provide that sense of community and the information that consumers seek.” And, therefore, as a blogger herself makes a large impact, standing side by side with designers, in the fashion industry.
“I see it as my job to showcase the most beautiful designs in a most interesting and attractive way to inspire people who know nothing about sustainability, to learn more about the designer and the garment. And THEN I tell them about all the great things that the designer does. Not the other way around. The beautiful design is still the most important point. Without it, sustainability is pointless.”
How would you explain your personal and professional relationships with to sustainability and consciousness?
Although on my blog I am fully focused on the fashion side of sustainability, in my personal life I can’t help but gain a lot of sustainable and mindful habits. From valuing quality over quantity; collecting experiences and not things, to eating less meat or getting involved in socially conscious projects. I don’t think you can just isolate one subject without it slowly seeping into other aspects of your life. I do not, however, think that you must be a vegan yogi to appreciate sustainable fashion. I think it’s one of the biggest misconceptions people have about sustainable fashion enthusiasts: it’s all or nothing.
What are your goals?
I would love to change the current image of sustainable fashion and to show that it can be as versatile as a mainstream fashion. I want to take sustainability away from aggressive activism (not that there’s anything wrong with that, it’s just not my thing) and to focus on the beauty and craftsmanship of the garments.
My long-term dream is that we’ll live in a world where there is no such a thing as sustainable and unsustainable fashion: all the clothes will be produced ethically and sustainably.
How does the technology developments affect your values and ethics on sustainability, and how does it affect you? – As blogging and many more effective tools, we utilize now is based on technology, do you think it contradicts to sustainability and consciousness?
On the contrary, I believe that technology IS the future of sustainability. We need to learn so much: how to recycle better, how to produce without such an impact on the environment. Robotics will substitute unethical labor. 3D printed garments & smart fabrics that change color and shape are already in development. I truly believe that if we invest in technological development now, we’ll benefit later.