Hot off the press this week, the Fashion Transparency Index 2017, reviews and ranks 100 of the biggest global fashion companies on the information they disclose about their social and environmental policies, practices and impacts. The research found that even the highest scoring brands on the list, none of which scored more than 50% overall, still have a long way to go towards being transparent. The good news? Increased demand from consumers is working - more brands than ever are sharing policies and commitments - but with an estimated 150 billion items of clothing delivered out of factories annually worldwide, there is a long way to go before we truly know who made our clothes. The report is a must read with clear action points for citizens, brands and retailers as well as government and policy makers. We are with Fashion Revolution in the belief that the first step towards positive change is greater transparency. Bring it on!
With her 2014 TEDx talk, “You are what you wear” still making waves on the internet, Redress founder Christina has been out and about continuing to spread the word about the positive power of fashion! She’s recently been invited to join a number of podcasts including Conscious Chatter where she shared her unconventional journey from dentistry to journalism to sustainable fashion activism, as well as insight on landfills after experiencing them firsthand. She also joined Magnifeco and Fashion Is Your Business during her recent visit to New York to promote the launch of the EcoChic Design Award in the USA, chatting about the next generation of designers and the positive direction they are pushing the fashion industry towards with their passion and sustainable design skills. If you’re in Hong Kong this week, join Christina for her live podcast recording on Friday (28 April) with #Impact - the session will also be followed by a screening of Frontline Fashion!
We have had an overwhelming response for the EcoChic Design Award 2017, receiving applications from 46 countries worldwide and we’re feeling positive about the future of the industry with so many passionate emerging designers committed to cutting waste out of fashion, forever!
Selecting the top design talents who will make it through to the next round of our sustainable fashion design competition, are two strong regional judging panels of international fashion experts. On our Asia judging panel are Michelle Bang, Catherine Chiu, Vega Wang, Queenie Yang and Sabyasachi Mukherje who will be perusing waste-reducing design concepts from Asia to select 12 semi-finalists from the region. Separately, Reet Aus, Michelle Bang, Christopher Raeburn, Magdalena Schaffrin and Stefan Siegel will put their heads together to put forward our 12 semi-finalists from the Europe and USA region.
All 24 semi-finalists will be announced on 2 May on www.ecochicdesignaward.com Stay tuned for updates!
Since the first EcoChic Design Award in 2011, we have witnessed the launch of the careers of an array of talented sustainable designers who are as passionate as us about changing the fashion industry for the better. We now celebrate a community of 107 alumni - semi-finalists and finalists of the competition. Research indicates that 65% of emerging millennial consumers want sustainable clothes, and our alumni are demonstrating that they want to design them, with more than 20% of our alumni developing their own fashion brands!
International Women’s Day on 8 March saw the world salute women everywhere, ranging from mothers and mountaineers to models. Redress used the occasion to champion the prolific contribution of women in fashion. From the people who make our clothes - 80% of all garment workers in developing countries are women – to the people who buy them – women account for around 60% of clothing sales – to those high-net worth women who are passionately investing their way into a more sustainable fashion industry – UBS suggest that by 2021 female investors could invest USD2.3 trillion into improving societal good.
The majority of products made today still follow a linear model, meaning that once a product has been used for the purpose it was designed for, it gets disposed of meaning the embedded resources are lost forever. But here’s a trillion-dollar idea that Redress are 100% behind – a circular model – where products were designed so that the embedded resources are recaptured and reused to create new products, generating a cycle that goes on infinitely. Earlier this year the Ellen Macarthur Foundation and Ideo launched the Circular Design Guide. This practical guide will, without a doubt, inspire designers to ask new questions about value creation and long-term business health, and how the application of circular principles can improve enterprises. And if you are interested in what is happening in circular innovation in your backyard, check out Circul-r, an organisation highlighting amazing projects all across the world - make sure to visit their initiatives tab.
“Dress [with] Sense, Redress’ upcoming new consumer guide to a conscious closet, is now available for pre-order on Amazon! Published by Thames & Hudson, the guide is organised into chapters of Buy, Wear, Care, and Dispose ― each containing practical tips and case studies to inspire consumers to take their first steps towards a more sustainable wardrobe. A percentage of profits will also go back into Redress’ work to cut waste out of fashion! Pre-order now ahead of its release in March 2017.
The EcoChic Design Award 2017 is now open to emerging fashion designers with less than three years experience living in any country in Asia, Europe and – for the first time ever – the USA. Applications are open until 3 April 2017, with career-changing prizes up for grabs. Watch the teaser video here and details of how to apply here.
In response to a found need for a more sustainable education in the fashion curriculum among educators and students alike, Redress has launched the EcoChic Design Award Sustainable Fashion Educator Pack; a ready to use resource to facilitate educators in introducing the topics of A Garment’s Lifecycle, and the design techniques of Zero-waste, Up-cycling and Reconstruction to their lessons. The packs are modular, providing presentations, exercises and project briefs for educators to weave into their current curriculums with ease. Find out more here.
Redress’ Education Director Kay Liu and EcoChic Design Award 2012 finalist Tiffany Pattinson were at the Swarovski Innovation Forum in Shanghai last week sharing with brands and design students about her journey towards sustainable fashion. We’re absolutely thrilled that since joining our competition that so many of our EcoChic Design Award alumni have gone on to establish their own sustainable fashion brands and also advocating a more positive future for the fashion industry. Find out about their brands here.
Earlier this year, we announced winners of the Ford Design Grant, an initiative created in partnership with Redress to support emerging designers with a bursary and the use of Ford’s sustainable materials for the development of their fashion projects. This month we caught up with the three stand-out winners from Finland, Germany and Hong Kong, and discovered vast creative diversity in their bold designs. The talented trio turned fabrics normally used in Ford’s vehicles into stylish men’s and womenswear, and even footwear, reminding us that when it comes to sustainability, designers are in the driver’s seat! See the full collection here on Facebook.
Clothing and styling: Isla Vainio
Photographer: Maria Hästbacka
Location: Espoo Museum of Modern Art, EMMA
Model: Kiss Kiss Forbidn
MUAH: Sonja Heinonen
Three brand new Designer's Guides are now available on our LEARN platform! Step into the design studios of our EcoChic Design Award alumni brands, Angus Tsui, Classics Anew and Wan & Wong Fashion, to get a behind the scenes look on how they apply the sustainable fashion design techniques of zero-waste, up-cycling and reconstruction to their work. Whether you are a student or designer, these step-by-step guides will be sure to inspire you to start your next sustainable fashion project. Make sure to check out our other resources and videos on sustainable design, sourcing, marketing and more too!
The EcoChic Design Award 2014/15 1st Prize Winner Kévin Germanier’s up-cycled collection is set to hit China’s leading luxury brand, Shanghai Tang’s, stores this September. The seven-piece womenswear capsule collection will be the brand’s first sustainable collection; up-cycled using their surplus textile stock, demonstrating that sustainability is part of a growing global trend to create fashion in a more environmentally sustainable way. Click here to find out more.
Redress recently welcomed Jill Grinda to the team as Executive Director. Jill is based in Hong Kong and is leading overall project development for Redress and The EcoChic Design Award, the world’s largest sustainable fashion design competition, as well as driving business development. Jill also oversees the production, education and communications teams in Hong Kong and Europe and is driving forth Redress’ programmes around industry and consumer engagement, and educating emerging designers.
Redress, is calling fashion lovers across Hong Kong to join in their citywide series of sustainable fashion focused events in this September to coincide with HKTDC's 'Hong Kong in Fashion 2016' and 'CENTRESTAGE 2016'. The month-long calendar of activities encourages the public to redress their relationship with their clothes and to cut waste out of fashion. Click here to find out more.
Earlier this month, The EcoChic Design Award 2015/16 Alumni Prize winners, Clementine Sandner and Wan & Wong Fashion, celebrated the much-anticipated sales launch of their collections in kapok. The Asian lifestyle store hosted an event in PMQ to mark the occasion for the winning brands where designers shared the stories behind their brands. We are thrilled to have worked with prize sponsor kapok to bring more sustainable fashion options to market, proving that it is possible to have design-led, desirable sustainable fashion! Plus, 10% of the sales of the collections were donated to Redress to support our ongoing work!
Click here to see our favourite moments.
Mark your calendars! Frontline Fashion – Redress’ very first feature-length documentary – is premiering on Fashion One on Monday 29 August. This 50 minute feature follows 10 talented Asian and European emerging fashion designers determined to change the future of fashion for the better in the world’s biggest sustainable fashion design competition, The EcoChic Design Award. If you, your university, school or organisation are interested in hosting a screening event, get in touch!
Hong Kong, like many other cities in the world, is enjoying a boom in circular initiatives that keep our unwanted clothes in a circular fashion system and, crucially, out of landfill. But given our staggeringly high textile waste rates in landfill, we have a long way yet to go. So how do we scale up this flurry of circular initiatives? To explore this, we co-hosted a roundtable with H&M, attended by Hong Kong’s circular movers and shakers to identify ways to maximise their circular impacts. Check out the roundtable summary report here to see what can be learnt from circular thinking.