After a 20-year career working for Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan, having been based in both Europe and the US, Bonnie Young has a deep understanding of how the fashion industry runs. But as a member of a family of environmentalists she is also acutely aware of how the industry gets it so wrong. One of her earliest jobs at Donna Karan was head of fabric development based in Milan, then in the mid-00s when she became Creative Director of Collection for Donna Karan, she honed a luxury aesthetic and traveled the world finding inspiration, looking for the latest and the newest. Those were different times. Today as founder of BY. Bonnie Young, her decision to use only deadstock fabric and existing materials for all forthcoming collections demonstrates how she has come full circle.
Young is no longer looking for the latest and newest, instead sifting through the old with a view to renew, but her gaze remains fixed on the future, and the generations to come. “My husband and children have had a great influence on me. They are all environmentalists and are very in touch with the issues we are facing today. They are outraged by all the waste the fashion industry is responsible for,” Young tells FashionUnited. “The conversation is ‘save the planet,’ but the planet will adapt and survive. The real question is will the human race survive. On this I must do my part to protect the future.”