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Bright Young Things Little Black Dress

A new "slow fashion" label introduces a little black dress designed for extreme versatility

by Margaret Kaminski in Style on 21 June 2010

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Designer Eliza Starbuck, launched her new label Bright Young Things last week with only one style—the always-fashionable Little Black Dress.

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Inspired by her work with the The Uniform Project, a challenge to wear only one dress every day for a full year to raise money for charity, Starbuck sought to design an outfit that was versatile, comfortable, and still fashionable. Her efforts resulted in the LBD that can be worn forwards, backwards, open, closed, dressed up, dressed down, in the morning and at night. The designer hopes that the dress empowers women to take fashion into their own hands and individualize their styles. Bright Young Things' website features images of women taking The Uniform Project up on their challenge, as well as various inspirations for how to wear the dress.

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Starbuck's design philosophy strays far from that of the average fashion designer. Rather than play to a certain season or aesthetic, the LBD is meant to flatter all shapes and sizes, and to last (physically and aesthetically) for years.

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In terms of sustainability, Starbuck aims to eliminate waste in fashion. Her goal in the LBD's creation was to encourage women to re-design and re-wear their pieces. No longer should women "have nothing to wear" when everything they already own pairs with the classic dress to create fresh, new, inspired looks without leaving their home closets. Waste elimination is a part of the garment creation process as well, as each individual dress is made to order. So, instead of making an educated guess at the demand and fitting the supply accordingly, not one dress goes unsold and not one customer goes without a product.

Of course, this process requires consumers to wait seven-eight weeks after the dress has been ordered for it to be manufactured and shipped. However, as it says in the Bright Young Things FAQ, by waiting it out "you are making a conscious decision to shop with purpose and deliberation," and thereby promoting the Slow Fashion movement. If the wait doesn't scare you, and you're interested in clothes that last at least as long as they take to create, then you can pre-order one of the exclusive and built-to-last Little Black Dresses for $185 each on the Bright Young Things online store.

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