Eko-Lab and Ekovaruhuset Show

An interview with Melissa Kirgan, ecofashion designer, who dyed her organic “Deep Waters” dress with Indigo, an excellent rotational crop for increasing soil fertility that contains no chemicals or toxic metals and Cochineal, the referenced beetles, which produce a totally natural red dye.

The final fashion week event that I was able to attend was the fabulous Eko-lab collective show, which featured designs from 12 different designers, including Melissa Kirgan, above, and Johanna Hofring, owner of the East Village ecofashion destination, Ekovaruhuset (also a cosponsor of this event), below.

To say I was exhausted by the time I reached this event was an understatement, but I was duly inspired by the gorgeous designs nonetheless. As you will be too when you take a look.

EKO 1 Johanna Hofring
Johana Hofring, owner of East Village boutique Ekovaruhuset, with one of her designs made of organic linen and dyed with Earthues natural colors.

A Horse Dress by Mika Machida, made with organic linen and organic Icelandic sheep’s wool.

Detail from A Horse Dress; Head Piece with random charms by Kaori Yamazaki, made with organic cotton, and vintage charms and chains.

Gibson Two-Piece Gown by Amy Mohlenhoff. Made with hand-crocheted hemp (top) and an organic hemp muslin dyed with Earthhues colors.

Tunic Dress by Desiree Hammen, made of organic nettle, peace silk bobbin lace and embroidery, with a hemp crochet necklace and an organic cotton mask.

EKO 10
Stella dress by Louise Zetterlund, made of organic Turkish cotton; graffiti pattern designed and created by Swedish artist Ola Kalnins colored with natural dyes.

EKO 11
Puppekleid, by Ashley Helvey, of predator-friendly wool, hand felted with rainwater and vegetable soap

EKO 11 detail
Detail of Puppekleid

EKO 12 Lara Miller
Lara Miller Flip sweater in cream and black, made from organic cotton and linen, hand-loomed in Chicago.

EKO Starre
Tipi Dress by Kaori Yamazaki, made of organic linen dyed with Earthhues colors. Starre Vartan of Eco Chick on right, wearing a Schroeder-Falzone hemp skirt, a Velvet silk blouse, and repurposed H&M linen vest (formerly a jacket).

Starre Vartan is founder and editor-in-chief of Eco-Chick.com and the author of the Eco-Chick Guide to Life. She's also a freelance science and environment writer who has published in National Geographic, CNN, Scientific American, Mental Floss, Pacific Standard, the NRDC, and many more. She lives on an island in Puget Sound with her partner and black cat. She was a geologist in her first career, and still picks up rocks wherever she goes.