"In difficult times, fashion is always extreme," Italian designer Elsa Sciaparelli said about World War Two.
As the global economic slowdown digs its heels in and consumers tighten their belts and fret about jobs, the Alternative Arts organization hosted its annual Alternative Fashion Week in Spitalfields market, London, a platform for young, new designers.
"This event is a prime example of how imagination and resourcefulness can overcome a mountain of economic obstacles and promote sustainability," the organizers said in a statement. "It's not about money or material success but inspiration and ideology, how to have designer fashion in the current financial climate, credit crunch couture, offering a world of real opportunities."
"The whole ethos of Alternative Fashion Week has always been about accessible fashion and being able to have designer fashion that you can actually afford," Maggie Pinhorn, director at Alternative Arts, told CNBC.com.
Pinhorn noted the importance sustainability plays in the Alternative Fashion Week and says Alternative Arts is interested in designers who create garments from recycled, reused, reclaimed and ethically sourced materials.
"We're interested in fashion that doesn't cost the earth, literally, not just financially," she said. "It is quite important we think about what we're wearing."