Words by Jessica Peace
She made punk, rad outfits and now is saving the planet with her protesting, spreading the word and a bit of gardening.
Raise your hands for Vivienne Westwood.
“I’m bored with fashion and much more concerned about the health of the planet. We barely have a generation to change things before it is too late”, Vivienne Westwood.
Although criticised for her role in consumerism, the ethical practice of her business and the chemicals in her clothes, Viv has been on a mission these past few years to do no less than save the planet. Through her own ‘Climate Revolution’ project and her work with Greenpeace, the Green Party and Cool Earth, she’s been taking action, getting us organised and shouting her mouth off about the real threat of climate change. Our favourite Westwood moment was her driving a tank (yes) to David Cameron’s gaff to protest against fracking up North.
STRUT IT LIKE A FILTHY GARDENER
A gardener - and gardener lover like ourselves, In her autumn/winter, 2009/10 show, Viv used her own gardener Andy Hume to strut down the gravel covered catwalk; donning posh tweed clobber, knee pads, swinging a trowel and pushing Viv about in a wheelbarrow.
PAMMY GAVE HER A CHUNK OF RAINFOREST
Cos of all her good work trying to save our rainforests, old pal Pamela Anderson had a chat with Viv’s mates at Cool Earth and bought up and protected 70 acres of rainforest for Viv’s 70th bash. Cool Earth were thrilled, “This sponsorship enables Cool Earth to work in partnership with the local community, to make trees worth more standing, helping to cool the planet, than cut down for timber or cattle ranching.” Nice one Pam.
TULIP INSPIRED BY THE DRESSER
Ughh, so much more than that OBE, we are jealous of Viv for receiving the ultimate prize - a new plant bred and named after ya.
Tulip breeder Jan Ligthart was asked by the Dutch embassy in London to breed a tulip for Viv to say thank you for bangin’ on about Dutch painting so much. This is no small thing as creating a new tulip takes at least 15 years… (One day we might be worthy!)
HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?
Apparently her husband does the front of the gaff and Viv looks after the 40ft back; filling it with English garden classics like the hydrangea and geranium; pink and yellow roses, acers, anemones, dahlias, crocosmia and rarer plants such as arisaema.
Viv, we salute you.
Have a gander at her planet saving stuff: http://climaterevolution.co.uk/wp/