Select Page

Is fast fashion like a dog chasing its tail?

Sustainable fashion or so-called Eco fashion  is becoming in-words. However, fast fashion is like dog chasing its tail. The faster the merry goes round the easier we will fall off. Is this fashions answer to the lack of creativity amongst designers or just a CEO short tactics to please the investors? I think not, a lot has been going on since 2000 when I first presented the key findings from mega trends 2000 – 2005. I was responsible for the trend department of Levi Strauss co Europe, Middle East and Africa. The report stated clearly that there would be a reaction to global brands exploitation of common global resources, and that happened also.  It made clear that there would come reaction from consumers and people affected in other eras of the world also.

Mega trends 2000 – 2005 Levi Strauss Co.  clearly pointed out sustainable fashion design

The book No Logo written by Naomi Campbell came out and that the anti consumerism organization  Ad Busters for real got attention. The global trade demonstrations in Seattle were another sign of the problem as a lot of the opinion leaders just got enough of a consumer culture that was spinning out of control. The last happenings are today as we see the ripple effect of the finance crises in US is hitting Europe hard. And harder it will be before it will return to a more stable situation. The only drawback for US and Europe than is that China has passed every other country as the economic super power.

The next one out is India to agree the world economy.  The main issue is that people start to take responsibilities by change the way to consume and the brands take their share. There are a few things happening, as modern fashion began to understand that if they continue this race of fast fashion the industry will sooner or later dig their own grave. Sustainable product design is a mega trend Modern fashion design is the approach to sustainable design today the key word, to  apply it in the core brand values of a company. Fashion and sustainability are often assumed to be in opposition, but they are not, but  sustainable fashion design is also a “concept” that attracts  consumers in the same way as any other pop cultural movement. The constantly moving pop culture that includes music, technology, films, manners and probably almost all styles of products and material.

We are acting in fashion like dogs chasing their tails

The modern world moves fast and because of the electronic media we are all interconnected, in different ways. The overload of information creates a desire where we feel something is missing. The need to be on top of everything otherwise we feel not seen or be heard. Fast fashion is like a dog chasing its own tail, spinning faster and faster until the dog falls off. Must we all follow the newness or is that changeable? As time passes, things we used to become old-fashioned and still this need for newness is there, almost at a constant level.  This way of consuming goods has seen by the society as beneficial for the economy, market stimulation and increasing competitiveness and more jobs.  The opposite this is the opposite of taking care of environment, resources and reducing consumption.


Reduce is an art

We need to cut anyway, whether or not global warming created by humans. Now people living in India are moving from a traditional vegetarian-based diet and into a western meat-based diet. As it takes much more energy to produce meat than vegetarian food, there is simply not enough space to feed all of us. The lack of space occurs as it takes up to 10 times more land to grow the same amount of energy from meat than when compared to vegetarian food. Quality will replace price as the number one key consumer measure the next years Development of a total design strategy that involves the designer to act and precipitate on a much higher level as responsible for the products. The designer must understand the chain of a product life-cycle. This is also the fact for the CEO and product managers as well. The long-term analysis of mega trends based on the reality around us  indicating the same.  There is clearly a paradigm shift in consumer behavior, where we are going away from price as the most powerful marketing weapon, and quality main criterion. The value I get for my investment in a product or services is becoming the key reason for the consumer. We perceive quality individually. This is of course based on the product or services where the decision-making process is relatively high.

Brands that take quality & product life – cycle management will  be a preferred

The winners are brands who take sustainability seriously. Sustainable product design will applied to all kinds of products in the future and, most clearly can we see it in architecture. . Brands that are taking sustainable design in a  seriously way will be the winning, preferred brand, product and services. This is happening right now and will continue and in the near future. Durability, comfort, authentic looking & longer lasting products are the key words. In quality, we find factors such as durability, comfort, longer lasting, looking quality over time and hassle-free are key words.

This is by any means a significant reason for the environment but seen as a bad thing for business. This is the wrong way to perceive it. When product quality is the key consumer driver, the producers are able to use better fabrics, use a longer process to produce and get better and longer lasting products: most of all there are better possibilities to track the consumer over time by implementing consumer service programs for products and services.  Therefore, their products can last even longer, prolong life cycles and transform the old product into another product, used in a new way or recycled.

Open a second-hand store & do decent business is the future

On the top of this, the need for newness in the second-hand products will increase dramatically. This is convenient for local business and creates new markets & distribution possibilities. And most of all possibilities making better profit margins since the price of products will increase due to this measure. The winners are brands who take sustainability seriously Sustainable product design will be applied to all kinds of products in the future and, most clearly can we see it in architecture. . Brands that are taking sustainable design in a  seriously way will be the winning, preferred brand, product and services. This is happening right now and will continue in the future. So what is sustainable fashion product design?

Sustainable fashion also called eco fashion is a part of the growing design philosophy and trend of sustainability, the goal of which is to create a system which supported indefinitely in terms of environmentalism and social responsibility. Sustainable fashion is part of the larger trend of sustainable design for a product  created and produced with consideration for the environment and social impact it may have throughout its total life span, including its carbon footprint. Sustainability in design is a mega trend

According to the May 2007 Vogue this does not seem to be a short-term trend, but one could last multiple seasons. While environmentalism used to manifest itself in the fashion world through donation of percentage of sales of a product to a charitable cause, fashion designers are now re-introducing eco-conscious methods at the source through the use of environmentally friendly materials and socially responsible methods of production. I.

Start with sustainable product design from day one.  There are no reasons not to start right now. Do not over complicate the process of sustainable design and there are some organizations working to increase opportunities for sustainable designers.  The main thing is to set the goals high but satisfied if not everything it solved at once. A new movement starts with optimistic people who inspire others, the main issue is to have a positive open attitude to it.

There are a lot of help from resources and organizations

The National Association of Sustainable Fashion Designers is one of these organizations. Its purpose is to aid entrepreneurs with growing fashion-related businesses that create social change and respect the environment.. im high but be happy even with one thing achieved Sustainable Designers provide specialized triple bottom-line education, training, and access to tools and industry resources that advance creative,creative and high impact businesses. The organization’s mission is to create social change through design and fashion-related businesses by providing education, training and programs that are transformative to the industry and to cultivate collaboration, sustainability and economic growth. Large companies have responsibility to share their innovation and know-how. What I genuinely hope for are for across industries to be sharing technology and knowhow to the industries in the countries that produce.  Smaller fashion groups producers and designers to take part in an open, creative environment. But this is possible too much to ask for.

Fibre Overview Diagram (Click and Open)

You do not need to hunt down the latest technology in fabrics

According to Earth Pledge, a non-profit organization NPO committed to promoting and supporting sustainable development, At least 8,000 chemicals  used to turn raw materials into textiles and 25% of the world’s pesticide used to grow non-organic cotton. This causes irreversible damage to people and the environment, and still two-thirds of a garment’s carbon footprint will occur after is been bought. To get the right fabrics are not an easy decision to take Listen to factory people, as well as producers; they see what is coming out in the drain in the end They can tell from experience what works or not. There are many factors when considering sustainability of a material. The source of a fiber, the process of how a raw fiber turned into a textile, the working conditions of the people producing the materials, and the materials’ total carbon footprint.

What about the new fabrics?Natural fibers are fibers which are found in nature and are not petroleum-based. Natural fiber  categorized into two main groups, cellulose or plant fiber and protein or animal fiber. Cellulose Cotton is one of the most widely grown and chemical-intensive crops in the world. Conventionally grown cotton uses about 25% of the world’s insecticides and more than 10% of the world’s pesticides. Other cellulose fibers include Jute, Flax, Hemp, Ramie, Abaca, Bamboo, Soy, Corn, Banana, and Pineapple. Protein-Wool, Silk, Angora, Camel, Alpaca, Lama, Vicuna, Cashmere, Mohair Manufactured from natural materials: Lyocell, Polylactic acid or PLA Corn Polymer


Wear your clothes longer and save carbon footprint

Recycled or reclaimed fibers made from scraps of fabrics collected from clothing factories, which processed back into short fibers for spinning into a new yarn. There are only a few facilities globally that are able to process the clippings and variations range from a blend of recycled cotton fibers, added repeat yarns for strength to recycled cotton fibers, virgin acrylic fibers which added for color consistency and strength. Please do not let actors or bullshit designers destroy sustainable fashion design by setting up the price Designers say that they are trying to merge these sustainable practices into modern clothing, rather than producing hippy clothes. Due to the efforts taken to decrease harm to the growth, manufacturing, and shipping of the products, sustainable fashion is typically more expensive than clothing produced by conventional methods. There are of course expensive to produce in this way, but if one can improve the quality much and at the same time as it saves the environment it’s genuinely exciting. Celebrities, models, and designers Stella McCartney, Rogan Gregory, Ali Hewson, Bono, and Summer Rayne Oakes have recently drawn attention to socially conscious and environmentally friendly fashion. Portland Fashion Week, which has featured sustainable designers and apparel since 2005, has also attracted international press for its efforts to sustainably produce a fashion problem. Do not follow sustainable fashion design simply because it’s a fad Though all cotton has a large carbon footprint for its cultivation and production, organic cotton considered a more sustainable choice for fabric, it’s totally free of destructive, toxic, pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Many designers have begun, experimenting with bamboo fiber, which absorbs greenhouse gases during its life cycle and grows quickly and plentifully without pesticides.

Fashion is harming the environment, but there are some solutions that can solve some problems

Even with this, bamboo fabric can cause environmental harm in production due to the chemicals used to create a soft Viscose from hard bamboo. Some believe hemp is one of the best choices for eco fabrics due to its ease of growth, though it remains illegal to grow in some countries. These facts make recycled, reclaimed, surplus, and vintage fabric arguably the most sustainable choice, as the raw material requires no agriculture and no manufacturing to produce. Get into the second-hand market for clothes and you might be successful There are many suppliers to buy from, start a new business in re make of recycled clothes will become a good business now and in the future. This is the real creative opportunity for a designer to design with limited fabrics.  The way of doing things in a limited way can almost compare it to the Danish film director Von Trier dogma on making a movie.

Recently another alternative to sustainable fashion has emerged that uses synthetic fibers with a process called Air Dye technology. It eliminates all water from the dying, printing process and cut water usage. While critics still point to the chemicals used in making synthetic materials, this method significantly reduces water consumption and pollution, while cotton (organic or not) uses a tremendous amount of water during the growth and dyeing phases. The consumer is the key to cut the carbon footprint

The amount of water to produce jeans gives you figure so high on carbon footprint that you be scared.  I have started cleaning my jeans by putting them in my freezer for 30 minutes and then viper it off with a moist cloth. Believe it or not  they will last 3 times longer and look so much better. When it comes to product design, in general, rule of energy consumption in the products entire life cycle are about 30% production, marketing, transport and sales and 70% the consumer buy and use the product before it ends its life cycle


Critics of sustainable fashion

They have argued that the trend merely seeks to stamp high-priced luxury goods with a seal of liberal and social approval. Another major criticism about sustainable fashion is the potential of constantly changing fashion to encourage customers repeatedly, to discard last season’s clothing to buy the latest fashions. But this is far from the truth as most producers, organizations and designers are honest about what they do Information about sustainable product design is enormous, both online, videos and in books. I recommend highly everyone to begin reading books by highly profiled authors on basic, classic and university studies to begin with. Stuart Walker has done some brilliant stuff on sustainability & fashion.  Attraction of Opposites & Reconciling Fashion With Sustainable Product Design” published in 1998, I used much of this work as the foundation for my mega trend presentations for Levi Strauss Co 2000. The reports are here on the blog and be updated shortly. I will if permission granted release some of his work here. Are you more interested than an  average reader I suggest dive into the movement Deep Ecology  was founded by Norwegian climber and philosopher Arne Næss, “Deep Ecology”. Remember that  we all have a personal responsibility for a change to happen.

Sources, Websites, and Further Reading (Click and Open)
  • There are rich sources of information everywhere on the net, but I recommend two books on the subject, not only fashion design but all other product categories
  • Product design in the sustainable era by Dalcacio Reis & Ed Julius Wiedemann on Taschen
  • Green style editorial coordinator Simone K. Schleifer on Booqs
  • The more theoretically book on sustainability is Sustainable Design Ecology, Architecture and planning. By Daniel E. Williams, FAIA
  • This article includes a list of references, but some of its sources are incomplete due to sources where information is not referred to.
  • Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations where . July 2008
  • Main source Wikipedia
  • a b c Earth to Fashion. Vogue May 2007. Pages 128-132.
  • Future Fashion
  • SCP  who we are
  • OC_legal
  • comparative study
  • Portland Fashion Week (October 19-24, 2007)

Check out the new Dictionary with More than 1000 illustrated terms on Eco Fashion Design

%d bloggers like this: