Prototyping the future of circular fashion
1 — A 50-year Fashion Statement
2 — Design for Permanence
3 — Fast and Light Fashion
4 — Design for Transience
The Circular Design Speeds project was developed as part of the Mistra Future Fashion Design Theme research. The proposition was to develop ‘ultra-fast’ and ‘super-slow’ design prototypes for different extremes of use, in order to better understand the design implications of different circular systems.
Researchers worked closely with material developers and service providers, to design appropriate materials for different speeds of use, production and recovery. They developed the concepts whilst also continuing to share their approaches with fashion designers in industry to enable commercial prototypes to be developed alongside the research garments.
The work resulted in several major outcomes: The Circular Transitions conference and Making Circles exhibition in 2016, exhibits in the V&A’s Fashioned from Nature exhibition and permanent collection in 2018, the Disrupting Patterns exhibition with Filippa K also in 2018 and the Circular Design Guidelines to be published in 2019.
Mistra Future Fashion is a cross-disciplinary research program holding a unique system perspective operating within the entire value chain. The program vision is to close the loop and enable a systemic change by providing research results and facilitating industry implementation. Mistra Future Fashion is initiated and primarily funded by Mistra Foundation and stretches over eight years, from 2011 to 2019. The program is hosted by RISE, Research Institute of Sweden in collaboration with 15 research partners and more than 50 industry partners.
Filippa K rose from the kitchen table of its founder Filippa Knutsson in 1993 and grew to become a defining brand in Scandinavian fashion. 25 years on, we continue to design ready-to-wear clothing and accessories for women and men founded on the philosophy of style, simplicity and quality. Our updated classics are created with warm minimalism and the modern lifestyle in mind. Committed to an entirely sustainable collection by 2030, we encourage mindful consumption and minimising environmental impact.
The Centre for Circular Design (CCD) is based at UAL which offers world-leading research and an extensive range of courses in art, design, fashion, communication and performing arts. Its graduates go on to work in and shape the creative industries worldwide. CCD is focused on practice-led and collaborative research to accelerate the transition towards designing for a circular future where materials are designed, produced, used and recovered in radical new ways.
Ahlstrom-Munksjö is one of the world’s leading players in sustainable and innovative fibre solutions. They generously provided nonwoven materials for the Fast Forward project, featured in the Pulp-It and Laser Line prototypes and samples.
AO is a project based design consultancy, specialising in the development, research and implementation of sustainable textiles. Their core practices include upcycling, local sourcing and the extraction of plant dyes. Penny Walsh supported UAL in the natural dyeing of the new nonwoven materials featured in the Fast Forward prototypes.
A-Tex is part of Trimco Group, one of the leading global suppliers of identity-creating branding items including labels, hang tags, badges, care labels, packaging solutions and store decorations for leading international fashion brands.
Axel Johnson International
A privately owned Swedish industrial group of over 100 companies in 25 countries with combined annual sales of €790m. Axel Johnson International drives business development and growth through a long-term approach to ownership in strategic niche markets, primarily technical components and solutions for industrial processes.
With its passion for food and people, Axfood develops and operates successful grocery formats. Axfood contributes to better everyday life where everyone can enjoy affordable, good and sustainable food.
An independent non-profit organisation focused on practical projects to achieve transformative sustainable change. Divided into four programs: sustainable consumption and production, circular economy, the future of food and inclusive societies.
Bags of Love
Since 2002, Bags of Love have been making personalised printed gifts. They enable people to make their own designs real, applied to over 400 products, which are made by hand in their artisan workshops in London.
Chalmers University of Technology conducts research and offers education in technology, science, shipping and architecture with a sustainable future as its global vision. In the CDS project they lead the LCA work on the Fast and Slow prototypes in collaboration with RISE and Swerea IVF. The full report is available on the Mistra Future Fashion website.
The world’s leading industrial thread manufacturer, UK-based Coats employs 19,000 people in over 50 countries across six continents. For over 200 years it has worked to create new advanced materials – touching everything from sewing thread, to medical sutures, to fibre optic cables.
In business since 2003, Case Study designs, develops and produces trims and packaging for the fashion industry. The company is headquartered in Hong Kong, with an international mindset and global client base.
Copenhagen Business School
CBS’ research profile covers a broad subject area within the social sciences and humanities. The academic breadth reflects a societal need to understand business issues in a broader social, political and cultural context. They worked on analysing new business models featured in the Service Shirt project resulting in a published journal article.
The result of a young and energetic mentality, Crafil is part of a generation of companies that still believes in the future of the textile industry in Portugal. With a deep passion for the product and a great desire to explore new ideas and techniques, the company brings a creative response to a competitive and demanding market.
Since 1980 Fa Tin has been recognised as a supplier for high-class fashion labels in China. The company’s values have earned it a reputation for quality and punctuality: Adherence to a scientific operation system, reassured by a professional personnel team, an insistence on granting a comprehensive benefit scheme to all of its employees.
From humble beginnings knocking on the doors of homes to offer eggs and potatoes for sale, Grönsakshallen Sorunda’s five core values: fairness, honesty, economy and common sense have allowed chefs across Sweden to produce the kind of food that they prefer in their own kitchens.
HearteartH Production is a multidisciplinary design studio based in Stockholm. Focusing on circular design, it is a pioneer at the forefront of the upcycling movement in Sweden, as well as an internationally renowned design studio. Winner of Swedish Elle Decoration 2017 and represented by several objects at the Swedish National Museum.
The Lenzing Group, headquartered in Austria, is an international company that produces high-quality fibers from renewable raw materials like wood with environmentally friendly and innovative technologies. For textile applications these fibres are branded TENCELTM.
Founded in 1997, Mogul was the first company in Turkey to produce spunbond and meltblown fabrics. It has grown to include three manufacturing plants in Turkey and one in the US, allowing an international staff of 400+ employees to supply a diverse range of sustainable nonwoven goods to markets in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
By mimicking nature’s own chemistry OrganoClick enters a new era in fiber based materials. Textiles become water repellent, wood is made durable and fire resistant, and strong yet lightweight 3D shaped bio-composites can be produced. All in a sustainable way in harmony with nature.
Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Recreate. This is what Philtex Plastics is all about. A specialist in its field, it is devoted to the full recycling and reprocessing of plastics, offering innovative solutions for each demand, with quality and sustainability paramount to its desire for a 100% recycled chain.
Richmond MakerLabs is an all-inclusive space for people with an interest in DIY and craft. The space features computer facilities, electronics lab, laser cutting, 3D printing, CNC machinery, metal lathe and an informal wood shop. They are part of the Ham United Group Community Interest Company (HUG).
RISE Research Institutes of Sweden is the nation’s research and innovation partner. Through international collaborations with the business community, academia and the public sector, it works to ensure the competitiveness of Swedish commerce and industry while contributing to a sustainable society. RISE lead the development, testing and analysis of the new nonwoven materials developed in the CDS project.
Rudholm & Haak
Rudholm & Haak is a worldwide producer and distributor of labels, trims and packaging for the fashion and garment industry. RH is strategically located in all major garment-manufacturing countries.
In Stena’s ideal world nothing is consumed. It collects all conceivable residual materials that arise from both business and production, reprocessing them into raw materials for new products or energy. In this way, it helps to create sustainable businesses while maximizing the Earth’s finite resources.
STOP! Micro Waste
STOP! Micro Waste is a nonprofit initiative dedicated to raising awareness about the (micro)plastic problem. It aims to explore and initiate great ideas on how to avoid, replace and re-use plastics in everyday life and beyond.
Swerea IVF develops and implements new technologies and new working methods within a range of sectors focusing on product, process and production development for ceramic, polymer and textile materials. They worked closely with UAL and FK in the CDS project to translate LCA insights into the heart of the design process.
The Welding Institute
The Welding Institute in Cambridge, UK, is the leading professional engineering institution for welding and joining all over the world. They have supported UAL in the development of new finishing processes for the Laser Line project since 2008.
Triumph Needle specialise in the technical areas of the sewing trade with heavy duty equipment for the shoe, upholstery and automotive industries and have recently added fabric ultrasonic welding equipment to our portfolio. They supported the production of the Pulp-It and Laser Line prototypes with sonic seam welding and quilting processing.
The V&A is the world’s leading museum of art and design, housing a permanent collection of over 2.3 million objects that span over 5,000 years of human creativity. The Museum holds many of the UK’s national collections and houses some of the greatest resources for the study of architecture, furniture, fashion, textiles, photography, sculpture, painting, jewellery, glass, ceramics, book arts, Asian art and design, theatre and performance. They commissioned the UAL team for their ‘Fashioned from Nature’ exhibition which is currently touring at the Natural History Museum, Copenhagen.
VTT is a visionary research, development and innovation partner. With a focus to drive sustainable growth and tackle the biggest global challenges they have over 75 years of experience of top-level research and science-based results. They kindly provided their innovative ‘aqueous cellulose adhesive’ for the construction of seams in the Paper Leather prototype.
We aRe SpinDye
We aRe SpinDye® has developed a way to colour polyester fabrics with extremely high precision and at the same time drastically reduce the use of water and chemicals. It also results in polyester fabrics that keep their colour, year after year, regardless of wear, washing or sun.
A family textile recycling business since 1948. At Wolkat, collected textile is transformed in-house to new products for the fashion, auto and furniture industries. Wolkat is unique in the world in offering a circular solution for textiles.