Top editors release new-wave fashion titles: Sustainable is the new black

heeled sandal on top of magazine

Glossy magazine gets a revamp with a focus on vintage clothing and creativity, as well as recycling. Ex-editors and directors of Britain’s most prestigious fashion magazines have made a name for themselves by creating print titles and websites that are focused on sustainable clothing.

Later this month, Calendar will go live online, spearheaded by ex-Elle editor-in-chief Anne-Marie Curtis following a launch on Instagram earlier this year. It follows More or Less. This magazine, which was founded by Jaime Perlman (previously the creative director at British Vogue), describes itself as the first magazine to prioritize sustainability in the fashion industry. It was launched in 2018 and featured Kate Moss on the first cover.

heeled sandal on top of magazine

Atmos magazine meanwhile aims to blend culture and climate. It launched in 2019 with a first issue featuring Yoko Ono and Ryan McGinley, and was co-founded by Willow Defebaugh who worked at GQ and V magazine.

While fashion magazines traditionally encourage consumers to buy new clothes each month, these magazines focus on more sustainable brands – but also upcycling, vintage clothing and creativity. Calendar posts thrifting tips and ways to fix existing items like handbags, while a shoot in the current issue of More or Less features no clothes at all. Models instead “wear” body paint created by Kezako Paris.

With no doubt an eye on Gen Z consumers, many of whom prioritise sustainability in their purchasing decisions, lots of brands are pivoting to this way of working. London Fashion Week was awash in recycled and repurposed fabrics – from well-known designers like Roksanda Ilic and Osman Yousefzada, to newer and more buzzy names like S.S.Daley or Saul Nash. Edeline Lee created her entire collection using leftover fabric from her studio.

This trend is also evident on the high-street. Part of the reason sustainable fashion magazines are growing is because fashion’s top brass have become disillusioned in their current industry.

Defebaugh has said that Atmos was prompted by what they call “fashion fatigue” while Perlman said she wants to better represent how fashion is evolving. She said that she felt a disconnect after working for many years in glossy luxury fashion magazines. I also wanted to celebrate vintage, DIY styles and sustainability which felt under-represented.

Curtis, who left Elle after 15 years in 2019, had a “lightbulb moment” while working on a sustainable issue of the magazine in 2018.

She said, “It completely transformed my mindset.” “I was able to learn a lot about myself as a fashion editor, and it made me pause. It’s like opening a new door and not being able to close it again. Although I still loved fashion, I couldn’t see all of the things that I could.”

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