Primark is launching new durability and repair initiatives designed to help ensure clothes can be worn for longer.
As part of its Primark Cares commitments, new initiatives include working with WRAP through the Textiles 2030 initiative to establish an industry-wide fashion durability standard.
The commitments also include collaborating with Hubbub and the University of Leeds to develop independent academic research looking at the relationship between price and durability alongside consumer behaviour. Another initiative is to scale up free clothing repair workshops across Europe alongside a new online hub featuring repair tutorials.
The clothing retailer has worked with WRAP to develop a framework based on WRAP’s Clothing Longevity Protocol. Primark has started testing denim products and it says that 60% of the products tested have passed this new enhanced standard.
Socks and all jersey categories across womenswear, menswear and kidswear are now being pilot tested in line with this new standard.
Catherine David, Director of Collaboration and Change at WRAP, commented: “WRAP’s Textiles 2030 initiative, in partnership with The Leeds Institute of Textiles and Colour, is currently exploring the complex nature of garment durability and how it is key to creating a more circular fashion industry, a project which Primark has been a key partner in.
WRAP welcomes Primark’s engagement with our work on the development of durability guidelines for clothing.
“WRAP welcomes Primark’s engagement with our work on the development of durability guidelines for clothing and shares their mission to help customers love their clothes for longer.”
As part of its project with Hubbub, Primark has commissioned the University of Leeds School of Design to carry out independent academic research that tests the physical durability of a range of women’s and men’s clothing of different price points under controlled conditions.
Primark says it will also work with Hubbub to research consumer attitudes to clothing and examine consumer wearing and washing habits in practice to further understand the factors that impact clothing durability. The findings of both these studies will be shared later this year.
Following a “successful pilot” in 2022, with 43 repair workshops rolled out to customers and colleagues in the UK and Republic of Ireland (ROI), Primark says it’s expanding its free repair workshop programme to more stores across the UK and ROI initially, with additional European markets to follow.
The sessions are led by Designer and Fashion lecturer Lorraine Mitchell and fashion stylist Janina Gruber. Primark says the sessions cover core basic repair skills, from sewing buttons, zips and mending tears, as well as lessons in customisation.
In the Primark Manchester Market Street store, in addition, to repair workshops, Primark says there will be a dedicated space where free monthly workshops will be run.
Whatever your budget you should be able to trust that the clothes you are buying meet a certain standard and can go the distance.
Commenting on the launch, Lynne Walker, Director of Primark Cares, said: “We believe passionately that more sustainable fashion should be affordable for all and whatever your budget you should be able to trust that the clothes you are buying meet a certain standard and can go the distance. This has never been more important for our customers.
“We know that many clothes that are discarded may still have plenty of wear left in them and that’s why we want to help people learn new repair skills to be able to sew, fix a button or even customise a piece of clothing and give it a new lease of life.”