Today, sustainability in fashion is a must. While many brands are working to become more eco-friendly and reduce their carbon footprints, it’s truly special when you see a brand working to inspire other brands to also jump on the bandwagon. That’s where Eileen Fisher comes in.
Through its Renew program—where old Eileen Fisher garments are recycled or brought back to stores through its take-back program, and then turned into raw materials for upcoming styles—it’s given other brands with an interest in sustainability an opportunity to learn. The brand has provided everything from tours of its Upstate New York Tiny Factory, where the magic of the Renew program takes place, to designer apprenticeships to teach other brands about its “circular” supply chain.
Through this, a new limited-edition collection was born: Public School for Eileen Fisher.
While this meeting of minds may seem unexpected—as Eileen Fisher is best known for its minimalist chic (and super-cozy) aesthetic, and Public School as one of the biggest streetwear labels of our time, the collaboration came about through Fisher’s and Public School designers Dao-Yi Chow's and Maxwell Osborne’s shared interest in sustainability. After hearing Fisher speak at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit, Chow and Osborne went to tour the Tiny Factory, and the partnership blossomed from there.
Using damaged garments from the take-back program, Chow and Osborne took over the Tiny Factory and designed a zero-waste collection that is truly one-of-a-kind.
“The collaboration felt natural because we share a deep interest in sustainability,” says Fisher of the new offering. “We believe these practices should be universal in the industry. Aesthetically, our two brands differ, but there are pieces that Maxwell and Dao created that I could see as a part of our line. One of the most important parts of this collaboration is spreading the message of sustainability to a younger generation of designers; they are the future voices of the industry.”
The limited-edition collection consists of four styles: a color-blocked silk top which was re-sewn from five different blouses (available in two colorways), a color-blocked merino sweater which was re-sewn from four sweaters, a denim pant re-sewn from seven different pants, and a felted logo hat created from various recycled garments. Only 20 pieces of each garment were produced, along with 75 hats—so each item is a special and Earth-friendly addition to your wardrobe. While the full collection is exclusive to the Eileen Fisher Brooklyn location, at 47 Bergen Street, you can snag the hat online at Public School.
“My hope is that the idea of sustainability and circularity can be a fun and creative challenge,” says Fisher about this collection—and the Renew project as a whole. “I think it can be daunting for a company that wants to tackle this issue but is unsure where to start. In order to truly move the needle in the industry, we must hold hands with each other, create an open dialogue, and continue to champion each other’s accomplishments.”
Take a closer look at the collection in full, below.