The collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh's garment district earlier this year killed more than a 1,000 garment workers. It also highlighted the ethical issues associated with the global fashion industry.
In response to this disaster - and broader fashion industry environmental and human rights problems - a number of new retailers and fashion labels that focus on social and environmental responsibility are springing up.
A good example is BeGood Clothing in San Francisco. They are predominately an online retailer of ethical and sustainable fashion, but they also have a retail store (pictured below).
BeGood is targeting the growing number of "conscious consumers" - people who want to know and minimize the environmental and social impact of their purchases. Nielsen, the large consumer research firm, reports this is a large and growing share of global consumers.
According to an article in Triple Pundit, Fast Fashion Has to Slow Down, this is another step in the broader slow money movement, which has its roots in the growing trend towards local, organic, sustainable food.
Slow fashion is also part of the broader shift towards local, handmade and/or artisan goods. We've long covered the rise of the artisan economy and the growing number of goods being produced using sustainable and artisan methods - which includes everything from bikes to distilled spirits.
It's exciting to see the fashion industry becoming more sustainable. In addition to the environmental and social benefits that will accrue, this shift will also create new opportunities for small fashion businesses and artisans.