Maison de Haj Chief Creative Officer Elhadji Gueye is committed to helping clients adjust to the “new normal.” As an industry leader and the man behind a global fashion enterprise, he believes that the fashion and design industry will find new ways to move forward. While the world is trying to find a solution against COVID-19, the fashion world is already gearing up to provide people with quality products that will help them during this time.
Despite the economic and social disruption caused by the pandemic, creative minds continue to find solutions that will make use of their materials. Most of the production has shifted from focusing on clothing to creating protective wear such as masks. As there is a shortage of protective gear all over the world, people in the fashion industry are doing their part by providing garments that will protect individuals when they leave their homes. “As a fashion designer, I immediately saw this as an opportunity to be able to contribute to the safety and well-being of the public,” Haj Gueye explains. However, the industry leader admits that there are still issues they are working on as they produce high-quality protective masks.
Regarding the public concern about designer-made masks and their effectiveness in shielding a person from viruses and germs, Haj Gueye says, “This is a concern that needs to be considered. And this is why I focused on washable, sustainable materials. I also think that as people are accepting the reality that this is not a short-term issue, it will be important to have multiple masks as a fundamental article of clothing. Let’s also be conscientious that disposable masks in large quantities are a negative impact on the environment and create another issue altogether.”
As Haj Gueye has noticed, the direction of fashion is toward sustainability. And it is a wise way to move forward. Through the years, the industry has been trying to be more aware of its impact on the environment. And while it can never reverse the damages caused by fast fashion or the potentially harmful and unsustainable process of producing garments, choosing to stand by environmentally conscious production methods will ensure higher-quality products for consumers.
Maison de Haj has been committed to sustainability since its establishment. It conducts business in an environment-friendly manner, particularly concerning packaging materials and the use of natural-fiber fabrics for garments. For the style purveyor, seeing other designers and brands make a move toward making conscious choices is the right response for this moment in history.
While safety and sustainability seem to be the foremost issues in the industry, Haj Gueye sees that fashion will continue to be a means for self-expression, especially during these days when many are looking for ways to find joy and comfort. Throughout history, fashion has become a means for people to respond to changing times. As there will also be changes to the way people dress, one can also expect innovation and ingenuity that will continue to breathe life to the evolving industry.