by Anna T Fabulous

Me with powerhouse Myriam Laroche

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MYRIAM LAROCHE

Founder and President of Eco Fashion Week

Twitter: @ecostylist @EcoFashionWeek

ECO FASHION WEEK

What is your secret dream job?

My secret dream job is Eco Fashion Week; it will be in my life forever.  But, ideal would be to work on establishing standards and criteria in this industry.  You know, for food there are rules.  You can’t just have any kind of food in your grocery store, there are minimums having local stuff, etc.  There is nothing like that in the [fashion] industry and I would love to be able to work more on that.  WE have started, but again it’s the question of financial resources to create something like that. Now that Eco Fashion Week is going so well, they don’t need me full-time.  I would like EFW to remain the platform and I would love to travel and educate different countries on how to do it.

Basically you want to bring Eco Fashion into a whole lifestyle?

Exactly.  What I’ve been working has been using all the different steps of lifecycle of our products, from the raw materials to the end consumer.  WE stretch it out into twelve different steps.  All the different jobs in the fashion industry are explored within those steps and we find solutions for each step, so it’s kind of infinite for what we can do within the Eco industry.  Businesses will have to start figuring out the best fit for them, depending on their human resources, financial resources, values and vision to find their own eco recipe.  H&M won’t have the same recipe as Nicole Berger or Elroy because it’s not the same thing, but that doesn’t mean that one is wrong or one is right.  It’s all about just doing it, making your best and improving each year.

What inspired you to get into Eco Fashion?

I think moving to Vancouver made me see a different lifestyle.  I’m from the East Coast.

When did you move here?

I moved here in February 2007.  It was a bit of a shock because at first you think we are in the same country but it’s like being on two different planets.  It’s easy to see how ‘green’ everything is out here [in Vancouver].  This city wants to be the greenest city in the world by 2020.  It’s when I heard about that when it really clicked that it was time for me to bring my experience to the table and help Vancouver to find their own identity in the fashion industry.

Before you moved to Vancouver did you have an Eco based lifestyle?

Well I was a vintage fan for sure. I’ve been a thrift shopper for twelve years, but no not as much.  In my first few years in the fashion industry I was a huge consumer.  Hundreds and thousands of dollars per year spent!  But as some point I got bored.  I think right now on the big runways it’s not about the clothes anymore it’s about who is sitting front row and that makes me sad.  The apparel industry is important; this is where we can be creative and shows that we can get the same results [as the big ticket shows] by being responsible.  I think it’s simple.  It doesn’t’ have to be ‘ugly’.

It’s interesting you say that because this is The Social Life’s first time covering Eco Fashion Week and we are blown away at how educational you guys are. You can tell it is about more than the front row or the outfits and street style. It has been phenomenal.

Thank you! It has been a labor of love.

Do you see the Eco fashion industry developing in New York, Paris or London?

It’s still starting.  The question is when will we stop saying ‘eco’.  How can we have everybody become responsible about branding themselves as being ‘eco’. New York, Paris, they all know.  But regardless of whether other cities follow, we are going to the top.  I’m hoping that in 10 years we won’t be saying ‘eco’ anymore and it will have no meaning because everything will be responsible.

PEOPLE

What famous person (alive or dead) do you turn to for inspiration?

Meditation and yoga is where I go to right now.

If you could fly anywhere this weekend, where would you go and who would you take with you?

I would go with my sister to LA.  I miss LA. I’ve been wanting to go!

PLACES-VANCOUVER

At what restaurant did you last eat your favorite meal?

Downtown Sushi on Davie & Bute!

Where is your favorite place to unwind and have an early evening cocktail?

The Boathouse. Happy hour oysters and beer!

What’s your favorite thing to do that can only be done in Vancouver?

Running on the seawall.

What is the one item in your closet you could never live without?

My cashmere cardigan from Harrods.  It’s a vintage one and it’s huge with many holes.  My friends try to steal it away.  It’s comfy, yet I can wear it over a super sexy dress.  I love it, it’s beautiful!

What is the one thing you always bring with you when you travel?

My contact cases.