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Estonian Fashion Festival opened an exhibition introducing designers at Viru Keskus  


Estonian Fashion Festival, the initiator of sustainable fashion held for the seventh consecutive year in Tartu, will open an exhibition on May 23 in the atrium on the 1st floor of Viru Keskus, showcasing the creations of designers participating in the upcoming festival.

The exhibition brings the fashion spectacle in Tartu closer to Tallinn residents, showcasing designers participating in three shows – Mood-Performance-Dance, Antonius, and OmaMood – whose creations blend traditions and innovation, creativity and sustainability, and ingenuity along with the valorization of local raw materials. The opening of the exhibition also marks the beginning of a long-term collaboration between the festival and Viru Centre.

According to festival director Key Külaots, the mission of the Estonian Fashion Festival is to promote a fashion culture that increasingly focuses on both production and consumption that is more sustainable. In the long run, the festival aims to become a leading advocate for sustainable fashion in Estonia. Külaots noted, “I am pleased that our collaboration with Viru Centre brings us a valuable partner with whom we can raise public awareness in the coming years and jointly organize activities that contribute to this cause.”

Kristel Sooaru, Marketing and Communications Manager at Viru Keskus, also emphasized the importance of the cooperation between the festival and the shopping center. “For Viru Centre, the exploration of sustainable and smart consumption is increasingly important, as our customers’ footprint largely aligns with the center’s footprint. The consumer’s journey towards better consumption decisions is often complex, and products are often anonymous, so we are delighted to welcome to our atrium a festival that has made sustainability its mission and its designers,” said Sooaru.

The exhibition was produced by Key Külaots and Madis Liplap. The photo credits go to Madis Palm, Lisette Laanoja, and Kerttu Kruusla, while the exhibition was designed by Maarja Roosi. The Estonian Fashion Festival exhibition can be visited in the atrium on the 1st floor of Viru Centre until June 9. The creation of the exhibition was supported by KIU textile print studio, the city of Tartu, and Tartu 2024.

In its seventh year, the festival, which is part of the main program of the European Capital of Culture Tartu 2024, has transformed youthful and innovative Tartu into the Green Fashion Capital, where an international community of sustainable fashion designers gathers annually. From June 6th to 9th, visitors can enjoy a diverse program, with the highlights being three distinct fashion shows: the unique and theatrical Mood-Performance-Dance, Antonius fashion show focusing on different body types and wearable fashion, and OmaMood promoting traditional handicrafts.

Additionally, the festival’s main program includes the second edition of the Greenery Seminar, featuring experts in circular economy and design, sustainable designers, and organizations dedicated to environmental conservation. The keynote speaker at Greenery is Alec Leach, author of the book “The World Is On Fire But We’re Still Buying Shoes,” who writes about fashion, sustainability, and greenwashing. His work has been featured in publications like the New York Times, GQ, Harper’s Bazaar, and Dazed, and he has contributed opinion pieces to Business of Fashion, i-D, and The Guardian.

The Estonian Fashion Festival will take place from June 6th to 9th, 2024 in Tartu. The program can be found on the website.

Photos Kalev Lilleorg

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