Fair Fashion

Time, Expertise, Craftsmanship: What It Takes to Make a Dior Bag

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I often hear that eco fashion is too expensive. But that’s not necessarily true, it’s that the cost of most cheap clothing is artificially low. (Did you know that the price of clothing has actually dropped over the past 25 years, while the cost of everything else has gone up? That’s because less than 2% of our clothing is Made in the US, where there are regulations for workers and the environment.)

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Sure, if you cut corners by paying workers less than what they are worth, don’t provide health insurance, employ children (they will even work for free sometimes! BTW: That’s slavery), and pollute rivers in countries where you work because you don’t pay to clean the waste water, that will save lots of money!

Le “Be Dior” sous toutes les coutures by VOGUEPARIS

The video above shows how much time, energy and expertise goes into a Dior bag. Each of the people here is an artist in their own way, and are paid fairly for the meticulous work they do. This doesn’t mean we should (or could) go out and buy a Dior bag, but just a reminder that the things we made are made by human beings, not machines.

 Dior takes us through each step of making their latest It-bag, from the precise leather-cutting, to the different pieces coming together and the neat stitching to finish. Go behind the scenes at the French couture house to watch the expert craftsmen at work.

Check out our Resources page for shops and designers at all kinds of price points, all of whom make clothes, shoes and accessories responsibly.

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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.