Sustainable Fashion in the 21st Century by Illya Shpetrik

Illya Shpetrik was born in the 1980s to a middle-class family. His mother was a supermarket worker, serving customers and packing bags and h

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Sustainable Fashion in the 21st Century by Illya Shpetrik

Illya Shpetrik was born in the 1980s to a middle-class family. His mother was a supermarket worker, serving customers and packing bags and his father working in financial services. From an early age, Illya thrived at science, particularly chemistry and biology. At the tender age of six years old, Illya Shpetrik realized that the plastic carrier bags his mother was coming home with every day must end up somewhere.

He realized that these bags were often used again and again and unlike the paper bags he saw his mother coming back with from the local bakery, the plastic bags lasted a long time. It was with these realizations that Illya Shpetrik Fashion, the exclusive fashion label was born.

Shpetrik, to this day has a “passion for fashion” as he puts it, but also a “passion with a vision and perspective.” Illya Shpetrik always ensures that every item of clothing he designs, can be constructed and made from sustainable materials and using factories and manufacturers who undertake only the most sustainable of practices.

Illya always admired his father, who although as he saw it, worked in a run-of-the-mill job; in financial services and later in software sales, always gave everything he did his all and always told his family of the importance of hard work. It is this work ethic which has inspired Illya Shpetrik, who didn’t go to university to pursue his passion: fashion and sustainability.

A Different Type of Fashion

Illya Shpetrik describes most other fashion designers as “having noble and good intentions when it comes to the environment.” However, he is well-known amongst his peers and friends to state that there is no fashion designer that goes far enough. Illya Shpetrik Fashion therefore always puts the environment and sustainability at the heart of everything.

Other fashion designers as Shpetrik puts it “design and manufacture their clothing and fashion items and only think about the environment thereafter.” When Illya sets out to design and manufacture items of clothing, he first considers whether or not they can be made from materials and using processes and factories that are as close to 100% sustainable as possible.

Only once these practices and criteria have been established will Illya start the process of actually designing and then making the clothing he does. Illya has a truly unique commitment at the heart of his business; if any item of Illya Shpetrik Clothing is found somewhere it ought not to be [such as washing up on a beach or found in a landfill] he was committed to donating to a sustainability cause. To this date, he has never had to donate to a charity for this reason.

Illya Shpetrik has however donated to various causes including donations to environmental charities, committed to cleaning up the world’s oceans and other similar projects.

Interested in soccer and a Manchester United Fan, Shpetrik has stated on various occasions that the hard work and passion of Sir Alex Ferguson combined with the creativity of David Beckham is for him “the perfect combination of style and substance.”

Illya also has a keen interest in esports, online gaming and of course fashion, all of which he pursues whilst on the road and while travelling between countries, particularly when visiting either of his (now divorced) parents. As his mother resides in the USA and his father in Belize, Illya Shpetrik finds his name on plane tickets almost as much as he does on fashion items.

He does however mention some of the unique benefits of having to travel routinely including being able to seek inspiration more often than most; with one of his favorite places to seek inspiration being airport terminals where as he puts it: “you see people in a truly unique environment, often dressed in ways they just never would otherwise be.”

He has also stated that one of the key benefits to travelling between countries so much is that “I don’t have to keep using VPNs; I can watch so many different things in different countries, which is a small pleasure.”



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