‘Circular Design Speeds’ 2018 exibits: What is sustainable fashion? How does it look like? Is it garments that should last you for 50 years or bio-based apparel that you can safely discard each day? Is it apparel made from 100 per cent recycled textiles or new clothes made from innovative and biodegradable materials?
Well, it seems that sustainable fashion can be all of these! We are living in the ‘golden times’ of fashion. Times of a fast transforming fashion landscape. A fashion that will cease to exist, at least the fashion that we know now. And we are all part of this transformation, part of a change, towards a more sustainable fashion landscape.
It is a fashion revolution in which new sparks of trial and error are becoming evident in all segments, from research, education to design, manufacturing and consumption. ‘Circular Design Speeds’ – an exhibition pushing the limits of ‘fast’ and ‘slow’ fashion – is just that, by encouraging new designers to think out of the box and question the conventional use of garments and normative design.
‘Circular Design Speeds’ was born as a collaboration of ‘Mistra Future Fashion‘ with ‘Centre for Circular Design at University of the Arts London‘ and industry insight from Filippa K, where ground-breaking textile research from UAL is looking at the creation of 100% recycled and recyclable – 100% bio-based and biodegradable garments to be worn across a spectrum of 1440 minutes (24h) to 50 years.
Some of the prototypes on display included the ‘Service Shirt’ created by Professor Rebecca Earley and designed as a ‘deliberate extreme’ to last for over 50 years. This lifecycle includes remanufacturing processes and various use cycles – from single ownership to rental and sharing contexts – before being chemically regenerated in the year 2068.
Another interesting concept is the ‘Fast-Forward’ prototype, a creation of Dr Kate Goldsworthy and Prof Kay Politowicz, made from bio-based nonwoven material co-developed with Dr Hjalmar Granberg at the Research Institute of Sweden & the University of the Arts London.
Similarly, Filippa K prototype is made of a mix of cellulose pulp and bio-based PLA fibre, making the garments 100% biodegradable or recyclable, in a design aimed to explore alternative modes of production and use for a sustainable ‘fast-fashion’ application.
These 100% bio-based/biodegradable and 100% recyclable coat and a concept dress are a part of Filippa K’s Front Runner series, which puts the accent on the life-length of the garments and fabric value maximisation.
“The paper-based garments benefit from the lower impacts of the material when compared with conventional cotton, from their relatively light weight and also on account of the lower impacts in garment production and use,” said Dr Peters.
We are witnessing a change most evident consumers’ lifestyle, values and shopping choices which are finally pushing the industry to shift for good. Which side are you on?