When farmers meet designers: letʼs grow shirts and create true eco fashion
Employing the greatest designer to be found on this planet, nature itself, gives rise to a different outlook on beauty and fashion. Is the perception of beauty man-made or is there such a thing as natural beauty? To find out, an Italian designer and an organic farmer came up with the idea of growing shirts, having nature design fashion. After a two year period of growth in the hills of Umbria, near the Tuscan border in Italy, the first harvest became ready for the catwalk.
In 2010, when Francesco Mugnaini, a 31 year old designer who had previously been working in the busy city of Milan, met Sebastian Runde, a 41 year old Scottish farmer running an organic farm in Umbria, Italy, they merged their different backgrounds and experiences to come up with a rather unusual fashion project: letʼs grow shirts. The unpredictability of nature was the seed for the idea, to plant and harvest shirts. The garments were exposed to natureʼs forces by planting them into the ground and give nature time to do her unpredictable design process. The result is stunning and every single design unique.
The T-shirt was considered ideal, as it is one of the most simple garments existing, there could be no better for the project. It is unpretentious, simple, like an empty canvas on which nature can create its designs. Francesco designed a shirt which truly complements the body, idealises it even. “We aimed for a focus on the aesthetics created by nature, to offer a perception of beauty man would never be able to create. We produce beautiful shirts, but it is nature who makes them truly unique” says Francesco Mugnaini. The materials used had to be of a kind which would react with the soil, the water or sunlight. Naturally no synthetic yarns could be used, as not to create a thread of pollution. After many tests, a high quality organic silk proved best and gave the most interesting results.
The silk shirts are produced by local craftsmen with great expertise. Sebastian Runde, as an organic farmer, is very passionate about his concern for the environment: “Producing the T-shirts abroad in a country with low labour costs was out of question. We looked for local recourses and were very lucky, indeed. We manage to produce a garment, which is 100% made in Italy. The yarns are coming from northern Italy, the shirts are produced locally in Città della Pieve.”
Since the first collection of RIGHT AS RAIN was harvested and up for sale, they continue to grow and evolve the brand adding more apparel and designs.
For the 2013 collection they began using a wonderful “Peace Silk”, no silkworms were harmed for their shirts. The silk has a lovely glow to it and, by nature of the material, does not have a completely uniform tone – even some knots are present. The slightly cloudy colour, the fact that silk worms were allowed to turn into moths and fly – all this contributed to deciding to leave some shirts untouched by the ground; this year’s harvest shall have shirts designed by the earth and by air.
RIGHT AS RAIN – Offering an always unique array of utterly different silk shirts for men and woman. All produced by local craftsmen in Italy and always 100% designed by nature.
Visit them online at: www.right-as-rain.com