There's something powerful about a strong monochrome outfit, and an even bigger statement is to be made when it's ethically handcrafted too. Shiva Novinfar agrees, and her namesake label is a reflection of her own values, style and vision for the kind of industry she wants to work in.
Based in Henley Beach in South Australia, Shiva hand-makes her collections in small exclusive runs and her attention to detail is paramount. She uses recycled deadstock fabrics wherever possible and each garment is carefully made to last, designed to fit seamlessly into the wardrobe of the elegant, modern woman.
Shiva is proud of the Australian designed, Australian made, ethical, vegan, transparent, social enterprise, and recycled fashion label she's built, but it hasn't always been an easy journey in the industry.
Shiva stepped away from her studio recently to share a little more about her own slow fashion experiences and what it means to be an ethical designer...
Why are you passionate about ethical fashion?
In my mind, fashion is a form of art and creation, and it should be appreciated. It's important for me to create high quality and environmentally friendly products. I like each of my collections to be original and telling a story. Also, I believe that art and fashion should be created in a way that is harmonious with the world we are living in, and it should help each of us to live better together. Therefore; I don't like to copy work or create something that harms the environment or another human being for the sake of fashion.
Why are you passionate about sustainability in the fashion industry?
Fashion should be created in a way that is in harmony with our environment and with other human beings. It should be created in a way that helps each of us live better together. Each of us has the choice of creating a better environment for us to live in or simply ignoring everything else for the sake of money. I, as a designer and a business owner, also have this choice to help the environment and I don't want to create products that come at the cost of other human beings, animals and the environment.
Why do you do what you do?
I love fashion, and I am passionate about creating things! For me, fashion is a form of art that allows me to express myself, and I love every part of it from being inspired, getting ideas, to drawing my collections and working with colours and textures. For me, each collection that I create is telling a story that takes us to another time and place.
What inspired you to launch your own ethical label?
Having an entrepreneurial spirit, I always found myself searching for new business ideas. Working as a graphic designer, I always wanted to have my T-shirt business; however, it only remained an idea. Having my fashion label is something that I was drawn to later in my life. It hasn't been easy to launch my collection. I had to study fashion and learn many things about the business of fashion. I made a lot of mistakes which was heartbreaking at the time, but I've learned from my mistakes and launched my own collection.
You design your range 'for the creative modern woman who values ethical fashion while maintaining classic elegance'. How do your collections continue to evolve?
Each of our collections is inspired by something different, from architecture and history, to culture and people. For example, for our next collection, I've been inspired by fashion from the 18th Century. I see fashion as a way for people to express themselves and their ideas and thoughts about the world. Quality and sustainability are also really important to us, and we hope it's just as important for our customers as well.
Support an ethical fashion future and shop the Shiva Novinfar range here.
The Fashion Advocate x