Last year we were fortunate enough to commence a partnership with Cornell University (funded by the EPA) and the ‘dream team’ of professors and students to help us work on creating zero waste pattern design at our design lab in Port-au-Prince. Our team consists of fashion and design officiandos, fibre scientists, fashion historians and a whole lot of creativity. After a few months of product development we welcomed Dr Tasha Lewis, the chef of our Cornell team, to visit us in PAP to see the progress. With her arrival we began to manufacture 4 new beautiful pieces designed by yours truly with patterns and technicals made by the Cornell dream team.
We are working to minimize our waste through the design process with the ultimate goal of zero waste pattern design. In the meantime we are looking for creative and innovative ways to use our scraps created from our design process. We are inspired to collaborate with other artists, designers and professionals in Haiti to create a network that allows us to share our resources and to find innovative ways to create sustainable business models in Haiti. This is merely the tip of the iceberg of where the dream team will go!
2 weeks ago we spent 3 glorious days at the oh so inspiring Cornell University. We knew Ithaca, NY was our kind of town when we stepped off the bus to see an organic co-op grocery store right across the street. Tasha, our gracious host, picked us up and whisked out for a scrumptious Thai dinner. We ate so well at Cornell. Honestly, half the time I go anywhere is really just to taste the food:)
Our first full day at Cornell started with coffee, fair trade & organic of course. Fuelled by caffeine we made our way to Dr Tasha Lewis’ Global Fashion Management class where we gave a lecture on sustainability and ethics in the fashion industry. This was followed by an overview of Local Buttons, a working model of sustainability AND ethics in the fashion industry. It was a great way to start off our trip and tour of Cornell.
What followed for the remainder of the three days was full of media, meetings, planning sessions, a 3D body scan:) and exploring the grounds. We met with our ‘dream team’ comprised of fibre scientists, pattern makers and design students.
We are so motivated and inspired by our partnership with Cornell. We can see how we can begin to look at the full life cycle of our garments so that we can improve our process and continue to look at ways to reduce our environmental impact. We cannot wait to return for our next meeting with the dream team, fingers crossed it will be the end of the month!
Here is a quick video of one of our meetings at Cornell.