Fashion's nonconformist queen, Dame
Launching a photo-campaign to promote
"I have decided not to expand any more. In fact I want to do the opposite," she told the Observer this weekend. "I am now more interested in quality rather than quantity."
Westwood, 72, said she did not want to defend the fashion industry, although she regards "true fashion" as an important part of culture. "Do I feel guilty about all the consumption that the fashion world promotes? Well, I can answer that by saying that I am now trying to make my own business more efficient and self-sustaining. This also means trying to make everybody who works in it happy, if I can."
Westwood's company made a pounds 5m profit in 2012. The results were significantly up on the previous year but the firm was criticised for unpaid work-experience schemes.
The designer from Derbyshire, who came to fame during the punk era for her partnership with the late music impresario
"What I want people to be able to do is to buy well, by first choosing well and then making it last. And I also believe that if everyone wore just a few beautiful things, there would not be such a climate change problem," she said. "In my view it is worse for someone to come out of a shop with an armful of new T-shirts made in a sweatshop, than it is for a rich lady to buy one beautiful dress."
Westwood said that communicating the threat of climate change had become her priority and so she is keen to promote
In recent years Westwood's campaigning has focused on reforming business policy, the ecology of climate change, anti-fracking events, and supporting the charity Cool Earth's efforts to preserve the rainforests. The designer aims, she said, to work on areas with achievable goals and she chronicles her activities on the website Climate Revolution. She sees the western economy as "intertwined" with ecological danger, "like two snakes".
The portraits for
Westwood met Gotts at a charity photo shoot for
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