Wednesday, May 12

Scotland’s sustainable fashion designers and bloggers

Sustainable fashion designers and bloggers are not only spotted in the busy streets of LA and London, many Scots are now also noticing the detrimental impact of fast fashion.

Property lawyer and fashion designer, Katie Corrigan, founded her company Corrigan Coats in 2018.

The inspiration for the company was necessity, as she says she frequently found herself searching for a knee-length coat, with a hood, suitable for commute by foot and made sustainably.

Therefore, Katie founded a company with the aim of creating a coat that would fit the bill.

She said: “The choice was another winter coat that doesn’t really do all I’d like it to or take matters into my own hands.”

The chosen material for the jackets is Harris Tweed: “the ideal fabric as it’s perfectly suited to Scottish weather: it’s warm but not too warm, no point being protected from the rain if you’re damp on the inside, shower resistant and windproof.”

The vision of the company is to introduce those who have not yet converted: “to what a beautiful, versatile and practical fabric Harris Tweed is, and how a classic fabric will stand the test of time.”

Katie said that fast fashion is something “we’ve all been sucked into” but the “appalling” impact is now much more evident, and people have started to wake up to it.

She added: “We can’t continue to consume and discard clothing in the way we have, because of the environmental impact of production and transportation, the waste from unwanted clothing and frequently the awful conditions suffered by people in the supply chain.”

Corrigan Coats are manufactured in Scotland, in small quantities to avoid both waste and retain control of their supply chain.

Katie believes that people in Scotland have started to become: “increasingly aware of problems fast fashion causes and, particularly with what’s happened over the past year, of the need for us all to make changes for the sake of the environment.

“A simple way to do that is to eschew fast fashion. For me that means making more informed choices – asking yourself how far has this garment travelled, what it’s made from, how much wear will it get, how long will it last – and crucially buying better products, less often.”

Sustainable fashion blogger Libby Richardson, better known by her Instagram name ecofashionlibs, has dedicated her time to showcasing how affordable and attainable it is to purchase clothing second hand or from small businesses.


Libby said: “I think that people in Scotland are definitely becoming more aware of the realities of fast fashion and the devastating impact that it has on the environment.

“Social media has a big part to play in sharing the message and more resources submerge everyday that allow people to really understand what fast fashion has done.”

She continued: “fast fashion is designed to make people want to buy new clothes constantly to keep up with trends and feel embarrassed for outfit repeating. Fast fashion makes garments that are not built to last and encourages the disposal of barley worn clothes.

“I think we all know in some way or another that fast fashion is bad but we don’t think that we can make a difference by cutting it out.”

Libby started her Instagram page as a platform to encourage others to shop second hand and by doing so be able to create a more sustainable wardrobe.

She believes that: “Although a lot of people are aware of the harms of fast fashion, it is all that is accessible to them.

“Until sustainable fashion becomes as easy as shopping in Primark for a lot of Scottish people it will feel out of reach. I think young Scottish people have a big part to play in paving the way for the slow fashion movement and showing others that it can be done.”

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