Fashion has always been the one industry to show the way, leaping back and forth in time, drawing inspiration from past times all the while striving to look into the future. Fashion’s latest trend draws inspiration from ethical issues and eco-friendly and human rights conscious fashion, it seems, is the next big step forward. Enter myshoppingsecrets.com, an online shopping directory which stresses the importance of human rights and fair trade, while encouraging designers and fashion companies to take the ethical and socially responsible route. Emma Ponsoby, the brains behind the project due to launch this autumn in London, is reluctant to take all the credit. Although myshoppingsecrets.com is an idea that has been brewing in her creative cells for years, she insists that the project belongs to anyone and everyone that want to join and contribute. “I would like to think that people would go on with the project even if I got run over by a bus tomorrow,” the petite brunette says sweetly. Emma wants to bring awareness of the human rights and fair trade issues that haven’t been too highly regarded by the fashion industry up until perhaps recent years. A $4000 ‘it’ bag might just burn a whole in your wallet but have you actually thought about where the bag comes from and who benefits from your hard-earned cash? It somehow doesn’t seem plausible that the workers at the ‘it’ handbag and shoe factories are the benefactors of such generous offerings from your credit card company. "But," says Emma, "this is perhaps even more so the case with rip-off, cheaper items, as these are being produced at a very low cost." Just look at all the headlines cheap high-street stores have made lately, as they are being accused of using slave labour to produce £3 tops and £8 shoes and handbags.
Let’s hope that a step in the ethical direction is much more than just a fading fashion trend but more like a wardrobe staple, or a vintage piece if you like, which will last for generations to come.