Laura Meijering, a designer, fashion lover and entrepreneur from The Netherlands. While studying, Laura watched the True Cost documentary – something inside her snapped and she realised she wanted to be part of a better fashion system. Laura founded Unravelau in 2017, to unravel the threads of fashion and keep only the good parts. She wants to pioneer a new way of designing the clothes we wear. As Laura says, unravelling the fashion industry is a big job, and so Unravelau starts by cutting the crap and spreading awareness of the impact we have on the planet. Unravelau uses only organic and second-hand materials, and produces for customer commissions, so there is no dead stock.
fashion & textiles
We meet Anthony Burns, Chief Operating Officer of ACS in Scotland. ACS started out as a formal-wear hire business, and is now an internationally recognised and award-winning circular fashion enterprise with clothes rental offerings for woman, men, children and babies. It is now working with a wide range of fashion brands, acting as their Circular Service Provider. We find out how the business has evolved, its progress towards B- Corp status, and about some of its innovations in packaging and garment cleaning. We also hear what ACS is doing to be a good neighbour in its local community.
Paraskevi Fotoglou is Sustainability Engineer at Camira Fabrics, a UK textile manufacturing company for task and soft seating.
Paraskevi has expertise in circular economy projects and innovative design ideas. She is exploring new sustainability paths and enhancing circular initiatives with the design, innovation and manufacturing teams across the business.
At Camira she has developed a broad knowledge on environmental accreditation, VOC emissions, the use of chemical substances used within each stage of fabric manufacture, and the incorporation of sustainable fibres.
We talk about some of the sustainable fabric developments, ‘Technical Knitting’, how Camira is developing Environmental Product Profiles, and why sustainability isn’t enough to engage customers and build a successful business.
Catherine Weetman talks to Tamsin Chislett, cofounder of fashion subscription startup Onloan, which has grown strongly this year despite lockdown.
Onloan is a bit different to other UK fashion rental options because it partners directly with top contemporary fashion brands, and it focuses on ‘elevated daywear’ rather than occasion wear. Onloan is also different because it does all its garment care and logistics in-house. Onloan offers its customers a way to enjoy all the newness and variety of fast fashion, but without the waste, and with much better clothes.
We find out why fashion subscription works so well for the customer and the brands, why Onloan’s customer base doesn’t fit typical demographics, and how Tamsin convinced those first few brands to come on board.
Zaqiya Cajee is a young entrepreneur in the UK who has set up a not-for-profit scheme. SwopItUp helps young people to swap their fashionable clothes, so they can experiment with different trends, colours, shapes and so on, without being part of the throwaway culture – and save money!
We’ll hear how SwopItUp is developing technology to engage users and to help overcome the challenges of distancing during lockdow, to reduce the risk of the virus spreading via the clothes, and to track and analyse swapping trends.
A purpose beyond profit
Dignified Wear in Ghana | The Thingery| ikigai for business purpose | Terracycle: doing the right thing for people and planet | Digital platforms for fashion supply chains | Fashion’s reset?|HP and Circular Computing |
Podcast: The Textile Review | Blog: Textile Reuse | Redefining Purpose | Build Back Better | Power and Responsibility | National Geographic | Sustainable Smartphones? |
The Textile Review, founded by Katie Briggs, is making fabric use more circular and sustainable, with services to repurpose and reuse textiles. It connects businesses, designers and students, matching ‘I have’ with ‘I need’ and creating value for both providers and users. The Textile Review aims to ‘help end the issue of single use textiles across event and design industries’, by slowing the flow of resources. We examine the different ways it creates value for both providers and users.
Katie Briggs set up The Textile Review, to close the loop on fabric from the events sector. She has found customers who value that pre-used fabric, and she helps both buyers and sellers reduce their costs and impact.
Podcast: Baukjen sustainable fashion | Blog: Fashion: from fast and forgettable to slow and sustainable – why purpose-driven brands are choosing circular strategies | Recommerce not recycling | Thriving post-pandemic |