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Circular Economy in Fashion and Textiles
  • ISSN: 2754-026X
  • E-ISSN: 2754-0278

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to provide information about the approach to developing circular fashion collections concepts built from scratch. I documented my approach to design my collection , launched in 2020, to understand and analyse the challenges and barriers stemming from applying circular design strategies. Current literature highlights organizational but also individual factors as instrumental in hindering the transition from a linear industry into a new one that embraces the circular economy as a solution to tackle environmental and societal issues. Bridging the various design stages and production, fashion designers play a major role for the urgent industry shift. However, limited time availability and a lack of knowledge and guidance often influence the adoption of new skills that can foster circular fashion design. To address this, I exemplarily applied circular design strategies and used reflective practice as a research method to analyse the technical as well as the cognitive impact of designing for a closed-loop business model. By using a visual diagram of a core loop with four additional satellites to map my design decisions against, I identified opportunities of designing with a circular strategy affecting all aspects from material sourcing to collection production and distribution, repair, reuse/closing the loop. The consideration of external factors such as customers (here users) enriches the value of circular design; hence, I conducted a free pilot with five users to test the effectiveness of my prototype collection. Open-ended questionnaires revealed their experience of wearing a garment of their choice and enabled a user-centric iteration process resulting in improving my collection for lease. Flexibility and systems thinking were main internal factors that I defined as essential for creating my circular collection concept alongside expanding the designer’s role from garment developer to facilitator of closed fashion loops.

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2022-10-01
2024-06-13
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