Zsadar’s environmental instincts

At the heart of Zsadar lies quality menswear with feel, aesthetic and unique style.

In the day and age of a world where all things environmentally sound are sought after, sustainability is considered god and renewability speaks louder than words, it’s no wonder such industries as fashion and style have taken a green hue of late with a skew towards fabrics and designs that have a neutral or negative environmental affect.

Shane Newton, founder and designer of Perth based menswear label Zsadar knows all too well the benefits, both environmental and aesthetic, of using natural fibres and fabrics for the benefit of his collections; he wouldn’t have it any other way.

“The feel of natural fabrics on the body is unreal. Some of the garments in Zsadar’s collections are like warm butter on the skin; some you don’t even notice you’re wearing because they’re so breathable and soft,” explained Newton.

The benefits of using natural fabrics are fairly self-evident. The silhouette they create along the body, the manner in which they drape and the exuberant nature with which they flow is more than testament enough to their usefulness in contemporary design. That’s not to say, however that manufactured textiles such as polyester, vinyl and other textiles don’t have their place. While their manufacturing can be considered ‘bad’ for the environment, designers such as Newton tend to look toward their benefits.

“Natural fabrics will always be a staple in Zsadar and a typically lovely material to use in fashion design, but I don’t discount man-made textiles. I’m a big fan of well made synthetic fabrics because they’re durable, easily maintained and have long-lasting qualities.”

In Zsadar’s Spring-Summer 2012-2013 collection entitled Mysteries of the Organism, fabrics such as silk, wool, cotton and even bamboo were used. With a play on organisms and nature itself, this collection featured an environmentally conscious undertone that aligned beautifully with the human-come-cephalopod aesthetic of the collection.

Newton attests to his environmental considerations while affirming that not all natural fibres are damaging to the earth and ecological systems. The bamboo used in his collections for example is considered – in addition to being quite unique – a ‘green’ fabric because of its low carbon footprint when harvested and manufactured and rapid reproduction rate.

Man made fabrics do have their place, he says, which will become evident through Zsadar’s introduction of them through current and future collections.

“Like anything, quality varies and there are higher quality varieties alongside cheaper, low grade versions,” said Newton.

Zsadar’s skew toward natural fabrics that feel amazing on the skin, drape effortlessly over the body and add a beautiful line atop the body isn’t going anywhere fast. While Newton will over time and in the next collection introduce a greater use of leather and silk, there is always an opportunity and willingness to utilise quality manufactured textiles for the right garments.

This story was first published in FJORDE MAGAZINE, issue 10, pages 34-37. The original story can be found on the FJORDE online magazine here (www.fjordemagazine.com) or in PDF here. Written by me.

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