The Battle Over Jane Austen’s Whiteness

It began, as things sometimes do on social media, with an emoji. A pineapple emoji to be exact. Fans of Sanditon, an eight-part Jane Austen adaptation currently airing on PBS Masterpiece, have been deploying the icon on Twitter as a shorthand for their esteem and support of the show, which padded out the surviving chapters…

Moda Operandi Co-Founder Returns to Fashion With New Low-Impact Label

In a sea of disposable, unsustainably produced clothing, Katla wants to stand out. Launched late last month by fashion veteran Aslaug Magnusdottir, the San Francisco-based brand seeks to be a force for good in the world—one that not only offers people a more mindful way to dress but also informs them about fashion’s impact on…

The Hidden Costs Of ‘Fast Fashion’

I spoke with Lucy Nalpathanchil, host of “Where We Live” on Connecticut Public Radio on Feb. 7, 2020 about the social and environmental impact of fast fashion, and what alternatives exist.

Direct-to-Consumer’s Lasting Impact on Fashion

At Art Basel in December, Levi’s hosted a pop-up that offered customers a chance to customize products at every turn. Levi’s Haus Miami let shoppers personalize jeans, screen print T-shirts or have items tailored on the spot. Other attractions included artist workshops and an art gallery, all designed to draw people in and get them…

Why Nonprofits Give Away So Much Crap

If it’s better to give than to receive, then why do charities and nonprofit groups insist on shoving stuff in our faces? As anyone who’s jammed yet another stack of return address labels into a drawer or flung a branded tote bag on a heap of other branded tote bags, both direct solicitations and the…

The North Face is the Eco-Friendly Brand You Didn’t Know Was Eco-Friendly

The North Face is sharpening its focus on sustainability, but don’t call it a pivot. The outdoor-apparel maker has considered its impact on the environment from the start, according to Carol Shu, its sustainability manager. It just doesn’t brag about it. “We’ve been doing a lot of things in the background for a long time,”…

Is It Even Possible to be a Sustainable Influencer?

Ellie Hughes isn’t a fan of the term “influencer,” even though she knows she’s one by most measures. On Instagram, Hughes has 10,400 followers, a number that places her squarely in the realm of “micro-influencer”—one step above “nano-influencer,” which influencer-intelligence platform Klear defines as having between 500 and 5,000 followers, but roughly 20,000 influencers short…

Why Ugly Christmas Sweaters Aren’t Very Sustainable

The ugly Christmas sweater has come a long way, but not necessarily for the better. No longer an embarrassing gift from a well-meaning but aesthetically challenged relative, it’s now something many people choose to buy as a source of irreverent holiday cheer. You can purchase an ugly Christmas sweater that shows Santa using a chimney…

Food Delivery and Takeout are Creating Mountains of Trash

About once a week, I slide open what I’ve taken to calling my “drawer of shame,” gaze at the plastic cutlery and wooden chopsticks that seem to multiply with each year, and then slam it shut with a sigh. You probably have one, too. Its contents (from takeout orders, from cross-country flights, from who knows…

Plastic Hangers Are Fashion’s Plastic Straws

In a world already drowning in plastic, single-use hangers aren’t helping. Experts estimate that billions of plastic clothing hangers are thrown away globally every year, with most used and discarded well before a garment is hung in stores, let alone inside shoppers’ closets. But it doesn’t have to be this way, according to French designer…

Why Fashion Needs Chief Diversity Officers

For the world’s leading fashion brands, chief diversity officers have become a hot hire. And with good reason. H&M appointed Annie Wu to the role after an image of a black boy wearing a hoodie with the words “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” sparked allegations of racism in 2018. Gucci hired its first chief diversity…