No Longer a Pet(ty) Issue
For years debates have been raging amongst animal activists on the moral hypocrisy of human beings in their treatment of animals. We make a distinction between animals we keep as pets and other animals that are slaughtered every single day in the billions to satisfy our palate pleasures. How do we love some animals as our children and massacre others without a thought? It is this hypocrisy that drove us to adopt a cruelty free-stance in our work as fashion designers over five years ago. We resolved never to use silkworms for clothing pleasure when we understood that 3500 silkworms were killed to produce a meter of silk. Our firm stand drew us closer to PETA, whose tireless work towards animal welfare we admire. PETA, in turn, perceived our commitment to ethics. Absolving the use of silk was a colossal decision for any Indian fashion designer to take given silk's all-pervasiveness in the Indian festive and bridal repertoires. In 2018, PETA awarded our founder Purvi Doshi with recognition in Compassionate Fashion.
The journey over the six years since our adoption of an animal rights policy to today has been nothing short of a learning experience. In our work with PETA, we discovered that a violation of animal rights wasn't just taking place in slaughterhouses and silk-farms but right here in our very homes. Through a campaign titled "Fish in Tanks, no thanks!", PETA highlights the freedoms of animals that we continuously violate through domestication and confinement. Fish are meant to be in oceans not in aquariums, no matter how we convince ourselves that no harm is done them. The very act of unnaturally confining another living being and asserting our power over them is in itself an act of violence.
To support this campaign, our label dedicated our Spring/Summer '19 collection to the marine cause. Titled "Marine Runway," it featured handwoven khadi, and cotton Kota Doria ensembles with hand embroidered sea animal motifs. These were showcased on the runaway using props to communicate the urgency of an issue involving marine pets that is imperative for us to recognize.