Welcome to the Clothing Workgroup.
This workgroup’s objective is to draw upon the knowledge and expertise of the many individuals and organizations around the world who are most knowledgeable about this planet’s clothing industry to make a plausible estimate of what would be required to meet the one-time goal of providing everyone on the planet with adequate clothing, and what would be needed thereafter to maintain its availability at that level.
The first step, therefore, is to identify those expert individuals and organization. Below is the list as it has been developed thus far. If you happen upon additional information sources that you believe will assist in this effort, please let us know by way of the CONTACT form. Or, if you would like to engage in your own line of research, let us know the results. And finally, if you feel the concept of the Whole Earth Design Project is something that you may wish to become involved in, let’s get acquainted.
The situation now:
When clothing is used to protect the human body from the elements, from injury, and from wear and tear, it is rightfully considered to be an essential. Even when it is used as adornment, it fills several essential purposes, as a form of self-expression, as entertainment, as a creative outlet, and as a means of sexual attraction. However, as a global commercial industry, the manufacture and distribution of clothing is uniquely driven, not by essential human need, but by effective marketing. Furthermore, the process itself involves an enormous waste of human and natural resources to satisfy each season’s new hot color or silhouette as determined by the fashionistas. Meanwhile, fiber harvested in one country is shipped to another where it is woven into fabrics which are then shipped to a third country where they are sewn into garments that are shipped to a fourth, and richer, country half way around the world where it will end up in a closet with a dozen others just like it except for a slightly different cut and a lively new color. The workers, on the other hand, the cotton pickers, the millworkers, and the sewing machine operators, have produced a product that, most likely, they are unable to afford themselves. Of the ten essentials tagged in this project, clothing is the one that carries with it an overabundance. If suddenly everyone decided to save only those clothes they are likely to wear, and donated all the rest to others, no one would have to go naked. And all those cotton pickers, millworkers, and sewing machine operators could take a break.
To let us know what you have to say about this subject, go to the discussion page where The Subject is CLOTHING.
Here are some of the experts:
Fashion Institute of Technology (http://www.fitnyc.edu/)
American Apparel and Footwear Association
US Department of Agriculture (Foreign Agricultural Service)
Cotton Economics Research Institute
National Cotton Council of America (http://www.cotton.org/)
American Cotton Shippers Association (http://www.acsa-cotton.org/)
Fiber Economics Bureau
Hemp Fashion and Accessories
The Manufactured Fiber Industry (http://www.afma.org/)
American Sheep Industry (http://www.sheepusa.org/)
National Textile Association (http://www.nationaltextile.org/)
American Textile Machinery Association
Nonwoven Fabrics Industry (INDA) (http://www.inda.org/)
National Association of Manufacturers (http://www.nam.org/)
Better Cotton Initiative (http://www.bettercotton.org)