My name is Rosie, I’m 16 years old and I’m starting my own ethical fashion line. It’s called AntiVice.
It was the Rana Plaza building collapse when I first learned about fast fashion. At the time, I was about 12 or 13, and I was horrified, not just that people had died but that they had died as a result of something everyone knew about, but didn’t do anything about. I started asking family members and other adults that I knew, and they all seemed to say, yes, sweat shops exist but what can we do about it? At this stage I had already become a vegetarian, and I think my mentality was, If I can do something about animal cruelty, I can do something about sweat shops! From there, I started to try and buy ethical fashion where and when I could.
The motivation behind starting my fashion brand AntiVice is purely a selfish one. When I first discovered and became committed to buying ethical fashion, there were a myriad of options as a pre-tween. Now, as a fully fledged teenager, there seem to be an ostensible lack of ethical stores selling my kinda gear. The gear I actually want to wear. I’ve gotten into op-shopping and that’s great, but there are just some things that can’t be op-shopped. So I launched AntiVice.
And it has been a work-in-progress, but all of my products (all five them) are plant-based, made in a GOTS and FLO cert approved factory, where water is recycled, and no toxic chemicals are used. I, above all, wanted to avoid any possibility of greenwashing. I wanted to be able to sell products that I believed in, and that I could back up with independent certification.
As you’ve probably guessed, I am a daydreamer. But I think that being able to live in your head is one of the best talents a person can have. You can create fictitious worlds out of a few moments of calm and quiet. I really think that this is an under-appreciated talent – it’s not a quality that’s valued by a capitalistic society, as it doesn’t directly make money. But it does have value. I mean, this business was just a daydream in my head a couple of years ago, and now garments are ready to be purchased by you (fingers crossed!).
“I want to make a better world, and I see no need to wait til I’m 18 to change the world. We create ripples of change as soon as we are born, and we are capable of redirecting the world in our image of kindness the moment that we set our minds to it. That’s what I’m setting my mind to anyway.”