Stella McCartney makes sustainable choices.
Her home is a reason to like her.
She’s planted forestry where there used to be…pavement? Supposedly? She has painted the walls white, describing her own space as a “garden within a garden within a garden.
She has invested in her property’s sustainable outcome, affording her the right to sit, untouchably denim and likeable.
I want to be her friend.
I am throwing away all my things.
When depression hits, the first thing I do is lie in bed and try not to die. The second thing I do is throw away all my things.
I have purchased a very famous de-cluttering book.
I am following steps to a vaster, more sustainable, minimalistic home.
I am photographing myself in the space.
Let my space tell my story for me.
I am not a pig.
I am Stella McCartney.
I am photographing myself in the space,
Staring straight into the camera, I am Stella, fashion goddess, Hi: I live in a paradise of nothing. I have, I promise, nothing. I am your example. Of a sustainable beauty. Involving new trees, gardens of perennials and a manor endowed with nothing but expensive tools for a healthier earth which have undeniably been purchased with money that I have precariously earned via my success in one of the most wasteful industries in the world.
Welcome to Sustainability: the elitist morality gong show featured on a social media platform near you.
What is Sustainability?
Sustainability is a topical nod to economic, industrial and domestic models that initiate less waste by recycling resources thereby elongating the health of our planet.
Government bodies and capital owners should be reinventing their political and professional methods for the sake of things like oxygen and animals (humans included) and existence but on a consumer level, most sustainable options are extremely expensive.
Or just consider the fact that individuals who are restricted in their means for survival are less likely to evaluate their most environmentally sustainable way to consume.
Consider more so that the invention of the internet has transformed morality into a public theatrical competition.
For example, Stella McCartney’s designs are sustainable. What does that mean?
It means that she’s invented yet another financially unsustainable means of one-upping your neighbour.
McCartney will not use animal product and to source her organic materials she partners with mills who agree to use recycled or sustainably grown materials.
That’s fantastic. Or, as McCartney would put it, that’s very “punk rock”.
I am willing to bet less than 1% of the population can afford to purchase a Stella McCartney item of clothing.
But, if you can afford it? Those $400 vegan adidas shoes? That $2000 organic cotton and rayon coat? You will be likeable too.
I am Morality. And you will like me.
In 2018 McCartney, after working for the famed Chloélabel for at least a decade, earned the cash and the confidence to buy back the 50% share of her own label that she sold to Kereng Group, a “luxury” conglomerate in charge of notable ooh-la-las such as Alexander McQueen and Gucci.
She had some influence on Kering. Ever since they bought her label in 2001, she had gained an interest in exposing and remedying fashion industry waste and she eventually influenced their decision to cut down their usage of furs.
But, ultimately McCartney was living in her own hope-orb.
There is no such thing as sustainable fashion.
The trick to sustainability is that we all need to be taking Less, making Less, wanting Less.
McCartney lives in the house of More.
That’s where we like her. In fashion. Her angel hair and blue eyes floating atop a thing that I need. She is style. She is fashion.
Fashion is a trashy, wasteful business.
Large companies exploit poverty to gain labour, they manufacture mass amounts of garbage which is ultimately murder for our atmosphere, our oceans and our future.
The most advantageous element of fashion is its effect on social stratification which…is not a good thing.
Just as the world starts to turn to more actually sustainable trends like minimalism and farm life, a fashion icon is made into a business heroine because she uses a word like sustainability.
McCartney’s morality is throwing her fashion back into relevancy but don’t let it fool you, it isn’t truly sustainable.
She isn’t Mother Earth.
She’s just a woman with a good job.
Encountering Sad Truths
“Did you know that Burberry trashes all their extra clothing from the year? They don’t even donate it, Rachel. They just throw it away,” mom is hugging my dog after a long day while forcibly watching a PGA tournament that my dad insists remains on while he works.
One of the players represents Burberry Golf.
Dad chimes in, “well, yeah, what are they going to do, give their clothing away? It’s not good for their brand.”
Dad has run our family business for the past forty years. We make gifts. Small things, the kind my mom loves to buy, the kind you impulsively give someone and then they later throw away when they are moving or cleaning or they decide to hate you suddenly.
In all the time I have spent around his company, I have never asked how much waste we contribute to the Earth.
“Canada Goose is probably the same way,” Dad is standing up now, watching the tournament and thinking, probably about the righteousness of capitalism and it’s contribution to his version of normalcy. Last year he became obsessed with the Canadian luxury winter clothing line, Canada Goose.
It is unclear where he first learned about the brand. Classically late to the party, dad explained to us how warm the Canada Goose jackets are over and over again before buying himself the kind of coat that would make any fur animal laugh, cry and run for the hills all at once.
I have told my dad many times that Canada Goose is responsible for North American dog genocide, using the coats of huskies to line the hoods of their jackets. He flatly rejects my information.
“Dad, that’s even worse if Canada Goose is trashing coats because they use fur. It’s all bad though. It’s all leather. Whatever.” Confronting my dad is immediately regrettable. He constantly deflects, gaslights, you name it.
“Well I don’t know about that!” Dad ends the conversation with one of his more popular manslations of “you’re an idiot” and I return to my room to keep working.
My dad is Stella McCartney.
He commits a large portion of his day to studies of the Old Testament and rabbinical philosophy, portraying himself as a righteous student but he harbours his own sad truths.
We all do.
There are no real prophets.
Online hype and global trends are remarkably powerful, swaying us to believe that we should like people who are actually, in whatever way, not that likeable.
I do it all the time: Posting images of myself in a beautiful home with a happy dog and a desk full of notebooks, an arts oasis and a caption about staying happy or something to do with mental health, something to do with helping other people feel better.
It isn’t fake but it is written with language that hopes to grip your liking of me.
I am not always sure it works but when it does, I keep working.
We all want to be prophets.
Here’s what’s real:
My house is a mess.
My dog was lying on the bathroom floor earlier which is usually only a sign that he is sick.
I woke up with a stiff neck and a wild case of nausea.
Despite birth control, I am convinced that I might be pregnant so my thoughts keep transforming into wonders of blood.
I am unemployed and looking for writing work, squeezing in YouTube lessons on web design and SEO, in case I don’t know what I am doing.
I don’t think I know what I am doing but then again true creative freedom and motivation comes from a willingness to learn and accept.