Rolling Out the Green Carpet to Honor the Forces of Fashion
By Haven Hathaway
Is Hollywood officially ready to refashion the red carpet and add a sustainability twist to make it greener? As celebrities start to embrace vintage fashion and re-wear their past carpet looks, sustainability is becoming a part of the stories told at some of the year's biggest events.
With vintage making its way to the mainstream and actors like Cate Blanchett making headlines for wearing recycled runway, Hollywood glamour is being redefined. If you have been keeping up with recent red carpet fashion, you may have seen some of these smaller changes already taking place, and Variety predicted this year's biggest night in Hollywood, the Oscars, would be no different. However, thanks to The Green Carpet Fashion Awards or the ‘Oscars of Fashion,’ sustainability is finally in the spotlight it deserves.
Eco-Age’s, The Green Carpet Fashion Awards (GFCA) debuted in Los Angeles, CA, during Oscar week on March 9, 2023. Eco-Age launched the GFCA in 2017 in Milan to “unite the fashion and entertainment industries in its goal of collective transformation.” This is the only awards ceremony that recognizes both the handprint (human impact) and footprint (environmental impact) of fashion.
Co-founder and creative director of Eco-Age, Livia Firth, started the Green Carpet Challenge (GCC) in January 2010 when she walked the red carpet at the Golden Globes in a repurposed wedding gown. The challenge has since then involved some of the biggest names in Hollywood, from Meryl Streep to Zendaya. Over the last decade, Firth has had her fair share of Hollywood red carpet appearances and found the city to be a returning muse for sustainable fashion in her life.
“My personal relationship with sustainable fashion started in Los Angeles,” Firth said to Vogue. “The person I asked to explain to me how fashion on the red carpet worked was Richard Buckley, and that’s when I came up with the idea for The Green Carpet Awards.”
This one-of-a-kind event was co-chaired by Cate Blanchett, Quannah Chasinghorse, Viola Davis, Tom Ford, Simu Liu, and Simone Ashley, all names we have seen pop up throughout sustainable fashion headlines over the years.
To prove that sustainability and high fashion coexist, the attendees were encouraged to re-wear outfits or choose sustainable options as part of Eco-Age’s GCC. The attendees showcased their looks while walking along the digital carpet floor that rotated between enchanted images of flowers. The symbol of GCFA is a dandelion because, like this flower, we are “unshakeable in our belief that we build a new narrative and we are unstoppable in our pursuit to create it.”
The New York Times captured some behind-the-scenes before the carpet to get the real stories behind the celebrities and their looks about to take the spotlight. Tulerie was thrilled to hear Gabriela Hearst’s designs were represented on the carpet. Also, Heidi Klum and Alicia Silverstone (GFCA Integrity award winner) shared with the reporters the importance of passing down clothing and sustainability practices to future generations.
After the green carpet and pre-show interviews, the attendees sat together to share a plant-based meal and enjoy the celebration of the six societal archetypes honors: The Visionary, The Messenger, The Rebel, The Healer, The Sage, and The Futurist. Before the event, GCFA shared the definitions behind these six societal archetypes in images resembling tarot cards, adding to the themes of the future and our connections with the world.
Tom Ford was awarded The Visionary for his Plastic Innovation Prize in partnership with The Lonely Whale, which seeks to find marine-safe and biodegradable alternatives to thin-film plastic polybags. Leonardo DiCaprio presented The Healer award to Sonia Guajajara for her extraordinary achievements in upholding people's rights and the Amazon's lands. Gabriela Hearst, Chloe’s creative director, was awarded The Sage for becoming the first luxury fashion house to earn a B Corp certification. Furthermore, The Futurist honored the CEO of Gucci Vault, Robert Treifus, for their contribution to a more sustainable and diversified luxury industry. Co-founders Eric Liedtke and Tara Moss of Unless Collective were awarded The Rebel for utilizing innovation to champion environmental impact. Lastly, the legendary environmentalist and late designer Vivienne Westwood’s granddaughter Cora Corré accepted The Messenger award on behalf of the Vivienne Foundation and Andreas Kronthaler.
The show ended with humanitarian Annie Lennox introducing 14 global young women leaders. As we celebrate Women’s History Month, it was empowering to witness the women honored for their leadership in teaching our youth to use their voices to inspire global change and solidarity.
“Passing the microphone to young activists is one of the most important things that we can do right now,” said Firth. “This is not us giving our blessing; we recognize that young activists are the driving force of empowerment. We owe them a debt and heavy recognition.”
As award season is ending, the GFCA has earned its status alongside the Oscars as it honored the forces of fashion who are not only talking but walking the awareness of sustainability. It’s time we embrace a little less red and a little more green.
-As always, elevate your wardrobe with respected fashion and embrace the shift in style
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