The degrading situation of our oceans is no longer news for anyone. Neither are the ever changing climate and other environmental disasters we have witnessed in the last few years. Neither is Pharrell’s Westwood hat. Our planet is in bad shape; however, seeing one of today’s most pressing issues at the forefront of fashion week is a sign of improvement.
As the creative director of Bionic Yarn, Pharrell Williams is using fashion as a platform for social change, collaborating with G-Star to create a denim collection made out of recycled fibers extracted from the ocean. The collaboration was announced this past Saturday at the Museum of Natural History, where an eclectic crowd listened carefully to environmentalists and scientists such as John Davis of the Vortex Project emphasize the importance of saving the oceans before marine animal life no longer exists.
According to the speakers, we have a responsibility to maintain the stability of our planet and most of us are completely ignorant of how our actions are affecting the future. Extracting and recycling plastic is not such a simple task; it requires a collective effort to stop using and producing plastic once and for all. Pharrell claims to also be learning about the environment and fashion as he goes. “Since I’m a novice in fashion and I waste everybody’s time on my own trying to figure out what they’re doing and how they’re doing it, I figured this was an interesting thing that popped up, the first thing that made sense because I got to add my little design to it. So if anything, I’m learning just as much as you guys.” He then continued, “I applaud the folks at G-Star because they’re a big force in fashion and they don’t have to care about these things. And I know it (the presentation) got a little heavy at times, but you know what? Sometimes the truth is heavy.” It sure is. While most people listened attentively to the presentation, some seemed uneasy as images of dead animals with plastic bags in their stomachs surfaced on the big screen. Pharrell ended his speech on a positive note, reminding the audience that as long as everyone collaborates and does what they’re supposed to do we can all be happy. “I like to make people happy” he said.
“RAW for the Oceans” will be available in stores this summer. Be happy about it.