DEFINITION OF SUSTAINABLE FASHION
Dr. Anna Brismar has developed the following definition of (more) sustainable fashion:
“Sustainable fashion can be defined as clothing, shoes and accessories that are manufactured, marketed and used in the most sustainable manner possible, taking into account both environmental and socio-economic aspects. In practice, this implies continuous work to improve all stages of the product’s life cycle, from design, raw material production, manufacturing, transport, storage, marketing and final sale, to use, reuse, repair, remake and recycling of the product and its components. From an environmental perspective, the aim should be to minimize any undesirable environmental effect of the product’s life cycle by: (a) ensuring efficient and careful use of natural resources (water, energy, land, soil, animals, plants, biodiversity, ecosystems, etc); (b) selecting renewable energy sources (wind, solar, etc) at every stage, and (c) maximizing repair, remake, reuse, and recycling of the product and its components. From a socio-economic perspective, all stakeholders should work to improve present working conditions for workers on the field, in the factories, transportation chain, and stores, by aligning with good ethics, best practice and international codes of conduct. In addition, fashion companies should contribute to encourage more sustainable consumption patterns, caring and washing practices, and overall attitudes to fashion.”
Source: The definition was first published on the Green Strategy’s website in 2014, and is also available here.
SEVEN FORMS OF SUSTAINABLE FASHION
The figure “Seven forms of sustainable fashion” was developed by Dr. Brismar as a conceptual tool for visualizing the many different ways in which sustainable fashion can be expressed. Seven main forms of (more) sustainable fashion were identified: “On Demand & Custom Made”, “Green & Clean”, “High Quality & Timeless Design”, “Fair & Ethical”, “Repair, Redesign & Upcycle”, “Rent, Lease & Swap” and “Secondhand & Vintage”.
“When we learn about “sustainable fashion”, we soon realize that there are many forms of (more) sustainable fashion. Some actors and individuals emphasize the importance of making clothes in a more environmentally friendly manner (here “Green & Clean”, while others advocate secondhand/vintage or underline the benefits of swapping, leasing or borrowing clothes as opposed to purchasing newly produced. All strategies that promote more environmentally, socially and ethically conscious production and consumption are important steps towards a more sustainable fashion industry.” (A. Brismar, Green Strategy, 2016)
Source: The concept was originally developed in 2012 and updated in autumn 2016. See here for more.
DEFINITION OF CIRCULAR FASHION
Dr. Brismar’s interest in the concept and principles of circular economy and their implications for the fashion industry took off during 2013, after a lecture by Dame Ellen MacArthur in Stockholm. During winter/spring 2014, Anna wrote two separate articles on circularity and fashion. In June 2014, Anna coined the term “circular fashion” at a project meeting while planning for the fashion event CIRCULAR FASHION – SHOW&TALK 2014 (for which she became project leader). In autumn 2016, she proposed the following definition of the term:
“Circular fashion can be defined as clothes, shoes or accessories that are designed, sourced, produced and provided with the intention to be used and circulate responsibly and effectively in society for as long as possible in their most valuable form, and hereafter return safely to the biosphere when no longer of use.” (A. Brismar, Circularfashion.com)
16 PRINCIPLES FOR MORE CIRCULAR FASHION
Sixteen key principles for a more circular fashion industry have been developed by Dr. Brismar in 2014 and 2015 as central elements of a Circular Fashion Framework .
The principles have been organized based on the typical lifecycle of a garment and its different phases. The first thirteen principles concern the production phase, that is the design process, sourcing phase, material production and final product manufacturing, as well as the phases of marketing and services provision, material reuse, recycling and possible composting during production. The last three principles relate to the user phase and what here needs to be considered to make the product’s entire lifecycle more circular.
Source: The 16 principles are presented in greater detail here: circularfashion.com/key-principles.
INNER AND OUTER CIRCLES
This is a conceptual image illustrating how products, components and materials should ideally circulate in society, firstly in the ”inner circles” (1, 2 and 3) and lastly in the ”outer circles” (4 and 5). In other words:
Products should: (1) initially be used carefully and longterm by the first users; (2) thereafter repaired and maintained to last even longer; (3) thirdly, be shared, redistributed and reused by new users through secondhand, lease, swapping etc; (4) fourthly, be redesigned and remanufactured into new products; and lastly (5) be recycled as materials or components for the generation of new products, or return to the biosphere as nutrients for ecosystems.
Source: First published on www.greenstrategy.se in September 2016 as part of this article.
CIRCULAR FASHION WEBSITE
The Circular Fashion website is an online platform launched in 2015 to promote a more circular and sustainable fashion industry on a global scale. The website is developed and maintained by Green Strategy.
The circularfashion.com website aims to spread awareness and promote dialogue around the concept, principles and best practices of circular fashion, and ultimately to encourage advancements at all levels for a more circular and sustainable fashion industry. (A. Brismar, Circularfashion.com).
The image of the logo has been developed with several connotations, as described in this article. First and foremost, the logo relates to the key principles of circular economy as adopted to the fashion industry through the concept circular fashion.
Source: Please visit our website circularfashion.com