This short film is not new. A friend shared it on Facebook this morning and, as I had never seen it, I thought I’d share it with you. It was made to commemorate the one hundredth anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in New York in 1911, the worst industrial disaster in the city’s history. But until workers the world over have basic rights, it will be timely – and essential viewing.
The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire killed 146 people. Workers were unable to escape as the owners had locked the doors to prevent unauthorised breaks and theft of goods from the factory. The majority of those killed were young women – aged 16 to 23. In the wake of Rana Plaza, Tazreen and more, this story is all too familiar.
The aftermath of the Triangle Shirtwaist fire saw a shift in labour rights in America. Eventually sweatshops were eliminated across the country. Outlawed. Illegal. The same was happening for industrial workers all over the ‘Western’ or ‘Developed’ world. This was a major victory for the bulk of the population in these nations.
But as has so often occurred in history, in taking care of our own problems, we dumped them elsewhere. We exported our labour rights violations to other countries.
Now, 100 years on, it’s time we cleaned up the mess we’ve made. And the only way that this will happen is if consumers start voting with their hard-earned money. If you buy from fast fashion, high street brands who are exploiting workers overseas, then urge them to do what is only right. Write them a letter outlining your concerns and if you don’t get a satisfactory response, then stop buying from them. There are high street brands who are making changes. Most have not eliminated the human rights violations in their supply chains altogether but small changes are a starting point. Spend your money with them. Or better yet, save your money. Lining the pockets of massive multi-national corporations is not as important as basic human rights. Nor is wearing the latest ‘fashion’.
It is so important to teach our children well. Let’s encourage them to think about what they are buying and why. If we can raise our children to be mindful consumers, then they will live more sustainable lives, which will benefit the planet and all her inhabitants.
You don’t have to take this from me. Listen to the thousands of experts out there who have been telling us that we need to make changes for decades. Most importantly, listen to your own conscience because at the end of the day, this is a question of ethics and turning a blind eye is irresponsible and just plain wrong.
Fableists: We need your help! Our animated film, voiced by Jennifer Saunders, is in the running to feature in the next issue of The Drum Creative Showcase. In order for The Fableists to edge in there, we need your votes!
Please can you click on the link below and click the ‘LIKE’ button under our film – The Epic Thread. Thanks – and finger crossed!!!
Little Flea features “Beautiful Things for Little People” and it launched online at the end of August. It’s a great place to find fashion, toys, gifts, decor & travel ideas for children. In addition to their web site, owner Anna Cascarina has launched a digital publication, which you can view here.
The Fableists clothes were included in so many wonderful shots, that we wanted to share them with you. You can buy all items on our web site at www.TheFableists.com.
Following the release of our animated short ‘The Epic Thread’ (which you can view here), The Mill published this interview with Matt.
The Fableists range is effortlessly cool but also has to incorporate an element of practicality – what are the challenges in designing for children?
We have never really thought about kids differently. Firstly, we believe kids like clothes (we have four so have some experience!) – but not fussy stuff. Our stuff allows kids to be kids. The concept of The Fableists’ wardrobe is that you can wear the clothes in the city, in the park, by the sea, up a tree, or to Sunday lunch at grandma’s…
The Fableists’ ‘The Epic Thread’ takes us on a journey. Our young heroine finds a thread on her t-shirt. Curious to discover where, how and by whom her t-shirt was made, she sets off – with her trusty best friend – on a quest to find out the whole story of the garment. Like the protagonist in our film, we were curious about the provenance of the clothes that we were buying for our children. Our research into the fashion and garment industry turned us off buying from big, fast fashion brands and we decided to launch our own collection of sustainably made children’s clothes – The Fableists.
We make sure that there is no child or slave labour used to make The Fableists clothes. Our factories have attained ethical and eco accreditation and we have visited and inspected them ourselves. The cotton we use is certified organic and grown by a collective of marginal farmers. We use natural dyes and take steps to reduce our carbon footprint. If you buy clothes from The Fableists, you can know that they do not contain any harmful chemicals and that you are helping to break the cycle of kids making clothes for other kids.
Creative Agency: Brothers and Sisters
Creatives: Jack Kerruish & Josh Pearce, Brothers and Sisters
Production Company: The Mill
Animation/Director: Kwok Fung Lam & Ivo Sousa, The Mill
Sound: Smith & Elms, Eclectic
Voice Over: Jennifer Saunders
The official press release is below:
Sustainable kids clothing company, The Fableists, unveil the 2nd film in their series, which is to be seeded and distributed online. ‘The Epic Thread’ is a collaboration between creative agency Brothers and Sisters, The Mill and Eclectic with a voiceover from highly acclaimed comedian Jennifer Saunders.
The thought provoking animation features a fearless young girl and her pet pug Tony, who follow a piece of thread on the girl’s t-shirt. The thread takes them on an adventure through the life of the clothing, starting from her bedroom and ending up at the very farm where the cotton was grown.
Created by Brothers and Sisters, the animation was directed by Kwok Fung Lam and Ivo Sousa from The Mill. The film is accompanied by a unique music track composed by Smith & Elms at Eclectic.
Eclectic’s Simon Elms says “I think that the challenge here was to create something that whilst retaining some sort of child like innocence, also had bags of attitude – a sonic reflection of the visuals.”
The Fableists is one of the only sustainable clothing companies for kids in the UK and was born out of a genuine passion to change the way in which kids clothes are produced. With so many clothes being made under illegal conditions in factories, the film is a call to arms to make us think about where clothes come from.
The brand has a simple mission – to break the cycle of kids making clothes for kids. Their range is fully sustainable, ethical and built to last and their designs are both cool and timeless.
‘’This animated spot is created by a melting pot of the UK’s foremost talent. It’s a great fantasy piece that takes us back to those fantastic books we read as kids and now read to our kids. Brothers and Sisters working with The Mill and Eclectic have delivered something totally original, that tells the story of the clothes, whilst creating a great young heroine” Matt Cooper, founder of The Fableists.
Andy Fowler, Founder and ECD of Brothers and Sisters adds “A director whose opinion I respect watched this film lately and said he thought it was the best combination of music and picture he’d seen for ages. I’ll take that. It’s not often you get to make something this pure and uncompromised. It’s been a privilege working with artists as talented as Ivo and Kwok and Simon and Colin at Eclectic.”
Kwok Fung Lam and Ivo Sousa, Mill+ Animation Directors add that “This was a one of a kind project, which we all really enjoyed being a part of, and we are incredibly proud of the final result. This project offered a fantastic level of creative freedom, and it was a pleasure to work with The Fableists founders and Brothers and Sisters to create such a fun and memorable film. We gathered as much inspirational material as possible, from character look and graphical compositions, to colour and texture. This was followed by a real hands on approach creating character designs, mood boards, style frames, storyboards and animatics, all contributing to the final look and feel, which perfectly accompanies the narrative.”
The Fableists: utilitarian-cool sustainable clothing for kids aged 4 to 10 years. Last year celebrated the launch of a visionary new label born from British talent, including leading artists, designers, production companies, an ad agency and an entrepreneur’s dream. Creative agency Brothers and Sisters, the multiple award winning global production company Great Guns, Oscar winning The Mill, D&AD nominated director Olivier Venturini and international gallery favourite photographer Sam Robinson have collaborated on creative projects for The Fableists. Plus respected artists and designers including Michael Arnold, Steve Scott, Crispin Finn and Greg Abbott were invited to design t-shirts for the collection. The new children’s brand is a mix of timeless, unisex and ultra-stylish clothes, built to last with solid ethical roots all made for a new generation of clued up consumers who want to buy differently. The label represents a move away from mass-produced fashion manufactured under sinister conditions and laden with chemicals.
Andy Fowler, Founder and ECD of Brothers and Sisters: “Making a change in the way consumers shop and perceive clothes in terms of buying, using and disposing of them, will make a huge difference to family health, the lives of others, the planet and will help to create a positive movement. But we are also adamant that our clothes look the business. The creative potential is huge.”
“Like so many people, we were concerned with the growing throw-away fashion trend that led to such tragedies as the Rana Plaza collapse last spring,” says The Fableists founder and entrepreneur Matt Cooper. “When we searched for great looking clothes whose provenance we could trace for our own kids, we couldn’t find what we were after. We created The Fableists to meet our own needs and those of our friends and colleagues in the creative industries.”
Mothers Meeting, which brings together the world’s coolest and most influential mums, has teamed up with top of the line stroller company Bugaboo to ‘pop up’ at BOXPARK for one week.
Beginning September 23rd, Mothers Meeting will be stocking some wonderful brands – all brought to you by mums (including The Fableists). But the MM pop up will be more than just a shop; it’s a social hub for mums to pop in and be inspired by motivational talks and workshops. Events range from mini workshops with the makers of some of the products in stock in the shop to makeup sessions, antenatal Q&A, a mystic group session and much more. More than anything, it’s a great opportunity to meet other amazing mums.
These events have to be booked in advance and space is very limited. Booking is only available for 48 hours, so snap to it, mums! See all Mothers Meeting events and book here.
Mothers Meeting events are extremely welcoming and there are always other newbies. It’s a friendly and social environment with the added bonus of meeting other mums who are up to and interested in cool things.
Pop in and check it out: 26 BOXPARK, 2-10 Bethnal Green Rd London, E1 6GY, UK
The Fableists’ first film, ‘Finn’, directed by Olivier Venturini through Great Guns has been selected to appear at the London Fashion Film Festival.
View ‘Finn’ here:
The London Fashion Film Festival is – in their own words – dedicated to celebrating the combined arts of film and fashion in one of the most important centres of fashion in the world, London. The Festival provides the opportunity to take a look at the subject in a variety of ways from documentaries, films about fashion, fashion shorts and films which have been influenced by fashion as well as films which have had an impact on the fashion industry itself.
The Festival was set up in 2013 by professionals from within the film and fashion industries to provide an opportunity to bring together the best and brightest of both industries to showcase creative talent, both locally and overseas. Working with up and coming filmmakers and artists as well as industry professionals, this in an opportunity to enjoy and celebrate fashion in film and get together with likeminded individuals for a fantastic programme of events.
Each year the London Fashion Film Festival host a variety of screenings centred on the subject of fashion and film, giving Londoners, film and fashion enthusiasts the chance to watch a number of iconic movies in the heart of the capital. As well as the main Festival, there will be a number of warm up events leading up to the Festival and the opportunity to take part in master classes and discussions with some of the industry’s most well-known names and faces.