Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s new book redefines the industry’s future

Leaders from across the fashion world have joined forces with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for a new book designed to inspire a creative-led transformation of the industry.

Circular Design for Fashion brings together some of fashion’s leading voices to set out new opportunities for creatives across the industry. The book tackles common myths and sets out the fundamental principles of circular design, which go beyond designing single products and services and instead focus on how to reshape the whole system. It explores how creatives can implement circular economy principles, and demonstrates that by viewing waste and pollution as design flaws, circular design can become the new norm.

Through examples of circular design in practice and with insights from luxury brands including Gucci and Vivienne Westwood, independent labels such as Kevin Germanier and Marine Serre, high-street giants including Gap Inc, H&M Group and PVH Corp., pioneers of the virtual fashion experience – Alvanon and The Fabricant, and clothing resale and rental specialists such as thredUP and Vestiaire Collective, the book shows how creatives can transform the future of fashion, from being a major cause of global challenges like climate change and biodiversity loss, to being part of the solution.

Commenting on the book Stella McCartney said “The circular economy offers exciting business opportunities whilst having a positive effect on the planet. The fashion industry needs to embrace it.”

The circular economy offers exciting business opportunities whilst having a positive effect on the planet. The fashion industry needs to embrace it.

Sara Sozzani Maino, Head of Vogue Talents, added “Now is the time to reinvent ourselves even further. The circular economy can take us beyond simply trying to do less harm — it is a bigger idea, one that has the power to inspire a new generation of designers …it is an opportunity to create a fashion industry that is part of the solution to challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution, and an industry that can thrive in the long term.”

“Circular design is the glue that holds materials, design and business models together. It empowers designers and ignites change. It motivates creatives to look at products in an entirely different way and enables access to options beyond selecting organic or recycled materials,” says Esther Verburg, EVP, Sustainable Business and Innovation at Tommy Hilfiger, owned by PVH Corp.

Elodie Rousselot, Circular Design Programme Manager at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said “Every year the fashion industry produces more and more clothing that is worn less and less. This wasteful and polluting way of doing business is fuelling climate change and biodiversity loss and cannot continue in the long term. But, as this book shows, circular design gives us an incredible opportunity to change that, and build a thriving fashion industry where waste and pollution are eliminated, products and materials are circulated, and nature is regenerated.”

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