Wednesday 4 July 2012

A Year At The Pier

A few special occasions to note today. This is the 200th View From The Pier post, and it also marks a year since I took on the huge responsibility of writing the blog.

It's been a challenge for me. Which is, to be honest, the whole point of the exercise. I've always felt it's important to push the boundaries of my writing. As a sci-fi/horror geek with questionable tastes in clothing, running an ethical fashion blog is as far out there as it gets.

All I can say is that you learn on the job. I'm still learning, and will continue to do so. My fascination with technology and smart solutions to everyday problems has bled into my writing for The Pier in surprising ways, and I'm always ready to have my eyebrows hiked into my hairline by new and innovative ideas. Ethical fashion is a fast-moving field, attracting very clever people from all sorts of different disciplines. It's a real melding of science and art, providing us with striking and beautiful products.

I don't want this post to turn into a clip show, but you can't see where you are until you know where you've been. We've highlighted designers like Veja, who recently won an Observer Green Award and Po-Zu, whose founder Sven Segal landed the Entrepreneur of The Year at the PEA Awards. We were there when the news started to break about the way Adidas and other multinationals were breaking the promise that the 2012 Olympics would be the greenest ever with their sweatshop practices.

We've cheered as Marks and Spencer made all the right moves towards becoming the most ethical chain on the High Street, and jeered at the greenwashing of wannabes like H&M with their strictly limited organic ranges.

And yes, we've crushed hard on Vivienne Westwood, and swooned over the brilliant Ethletic trainers. We've whooped and pointed and blown raspberries at a government that has no idea that you don't give the Third Sector extra responsibility at the same time as you cut their funding and not expect people to notice. I've talked to two lads in a field in Stroud about pants, and celebrated undies with Holloway-Smith Noir.

Here at The Pier we are opinionated, passionate, open-minded and ready to learn. We don't know everything, but we're smart enough to find out how to fill in the gaps.

We're a year in, and I think I've just set up the ground rules and laid the foundations. It only gets better from here.

It's especially nice to be able to celebrate today as it's the birthday of Ali, Mascot and Future Boss of Pier32. Let's crack a bottle of organic Fairtrade sparkly, enjoy some cake and look forward to another year at The Pier.

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