SUSTAINABLE THOUGHTS: EMELI MARTENSSON

5PREVIEW EMELIEmeli is the CEO and creative director of 5PREVIEW. Her wardrobe is like a tomb full of unused clothing and she has been self-diagnosed with serious debilitating climate angst. Still she continues her shopping, calling it “research”, and she designs and produces new garments for the brand every season. With a fully grown interest in sustainability she is now at a crossroad looking at her personal and professional choices and the impact they have on the environment.

Here is her confession:

To think and live in a sustainable way. There are endless possibilities. A discussion has just started, where we question the overconsumption of modern people. With always accessible internet in our pockets and online shopping on the phones the shopping behavior and trends have been synchronized: everything is possible to have and to get, just a few clicks away. And we all can look the same. If that is what we want. Like with all trends there is a reaction, an anti-trend. When everything is really possible people resist and react. There is a satisfaction in going your own way. A new consciousness that makes us bake our own bread, brew our own beer, grow our own vegetables. To personalize our own brand. Yes, I wonder why it has become so popular with personalization of sneakers and why people stand in long lines to get their hands on limited edition garments. As a suggestion: to feel unique. A life in front of the computer kills a lot of creativity and I think there are many of us that really misses to work with our hands, to create something physical, for real. Something unique. Because we feel unique, and we are. To make things important again, to take a step away from disposability and takeaway. To find a beautiful fabric in a market, on a trip, and to make something out of it. To be attracted by the locally produced, to the craftsmanship. To stop optimizing and feel that life sucks you dry. It cannot be sustainable for us, as humans. We’re not yet machines. I wanted to examine my own behaviour. I have worked with fashion for the last 15 years. I’m interested in both trends and clothes but I’ve never taken my time to reflect on my own consumption behaviour vs. sustainable thinking. I grew up in a D-I-Y family where we built our own houses and kilometres of rag rugs (made of old jeans, sheets, and whatever leftover fabric could be found) were woven. Mending and repairing came naturally and we got fresh eggs from our neighbouring farmer. The bread was baked at home and the fish we caught ourselves (at least in summertime). The vegetables came from our own garden and when we consumed quality was prioritized, because both of my parents have a great material knowledge. What happened with all that when I grew up, became a parent and now live in the city centre of a town with a million inhabitants? It disappeared and the everyday stress and routine took over. I design two new collections every year, it comes automatically, and I have not really reflected over what kind of footprint I want to leave in this world. So I stopped and I looked around. For people around me that got a little further than me in, what I consider to be, the right direction. Sophia had a purchase stop for one year, as a challenge. She saved so much money that she is now able to work half-days and spend the rest of her time doing what she enjoys. Francesca, that works as a fashion stylist at an international level, confronted with new trends and divine clothes every day, choses to dress in her “daily uniform” - jeans and T-shirt. Kerstin, a passionate craftswoman that now runs a denim shop and has just released her new book about mending and repairing clothes. She wants to teach people how to mend to help them feel confident and competent. And Amanda, that shares her secrets on how NOT to wash the clothes, to give them a longer life and a lot of love.