On the 13th of September The Sustainable Angle’s curator Amanda Johnston was invited to join the Lenzing Sustainability panel discussion during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Istanbul. This year the event was held at the Zorlu Performing Arts Centre, nestled within the luxurious Zorlu shopping centre.
The history of Istanbul Fashion Week only dates back to 2008, then named Fashion Lab, expanding to become a fully-fledged fashion week in 2010.
The panel were greeted by a packed theatre with a diverse audience comprised of fashion fans, industry insiders, buyers, journalists, bloggers, influencers and photographers.
The discussion was chaired by renowned journalist Ferhan Istanbullu, and the panel was coordinated by Hale Saracoglu from Lenzing, who also contributed her expertise in the fashion industry supply chain and in the field of man made cellulosics. She conveyed the importance of clear communication around sustainability to the discussion. Hale explained and highlighted the FSC certified wood feedstock, closed loop production process and key benefits of different Lenzing fibres such as Tencel™, Eco Vero™ and Refibra™.
Ferhan was interested to hear the panel’s thoughts on defining sustainability, and to frame the importance of our fast fashion habits as contributors to the culture of fashion consumption. The panel observed that with fast fashion we have been led to consume very easily in excess quantities. We can throw away the products we don’t like or we don’t want anymore so easily, as their price suggests that their value is disposable, and we have lost the desire, patience and knowledge to care for and repair our clothing.
The challenges designers and brands face today is in implementing holistic sustainable practices- and understanding that sustainability goes beyond choosing the right fibres or production processes, but is also about the quality and longevity of garments, in order to stem the huge environmental impact that comes from today’s throw away culture of clothing.
Amanda introduced the work of the The Sustainable Angle, what we do, and how we developed our criteria, highlighting examples of more sustainable and responsible materials for fashion in both man-made and natural fibres which have a low environmental impact, highlighting the variety of choices available and the necessity to move away from unsustainable non-renewable virgin polyester and conventionally grown cotton currently dominating the market. We discussed the need for diversification of the global fibre basket, and the crucial need to develop circular models throughout the textiles supply chain, and through to product in order to provide solutions to our growing, and unmanageable material waste streams. We shared the interest from industry partners in projects that propose how we may think differently about material sources in the future, and how we manage those waste streams.
At retail lack of information on labels means that consumers don’t know where the fabric come from, what is it made of? The answers to these questions and transparency of process are important. For example TENCEL™ branded fibers come from trees. But, understanding the processes that makes the fibre, yarn and fabric are as important as the raw material of fabrics, only this way we may understand its impact to the environment and make informed choices when we shop. The need for full transparency of information, certifications and supply chain traceability being key.
Simone Seisl, Materials expert, Ambassador and Consultant for Textile Exchange said; ‘we are talking about a very serious subject with global climate change, and we need to act as a community to create a change. We have duties individually both in our professional work environment and personally in our private life. We don’t expect anyone to make a dramatic change from day one to day two however starting from today we need to start this movement step by step. Water waste, global climate change and the micro-plastic issue in the oceans are some of the environmental problems. There is no one solution to all, all the problems are linked together.’
Simone flagged up an opportunity and observed that Turkey is a key player in Denim production in the world, and that Textile Exchange believe that Turkey is poised to play an important role in the successful recycling of Denim in the future, lowering the impact on natural resources and initiating an important step towards the circular economy for textiles.
All agreed there is now an urgency to investigate how we can produce raw materials more sustainably, and innovate, by first thinking in a solutions based way. Also, discussions about some of the new innovations and solutions, developed to address our most pressing sustainability issues, including leather alternatives and the interest in recycling technologies and pre and post consumer industry and food waste materials suggested a new, responsibly produced materials landscape for the future.
The discussion concluded with a Q&A, of not only consumer habits and how to make the right fibre choices, but most importantly of how to think creatively, how sustainability should be recognised as a game changer and an opportunity, for businesses to future proof their operations. The discussion also drew attention to the significance of the impact that we as consumers and industry practitioners can have through our everyday choices.
Many thanks to Hale and the team at Lenzing Istanbul for their organisation and hospitality.
The Sustainable Angle is delighted to announce that the 8th Future Fabrics Expo will present its largest ever dedicated sustainable materials showcase at a new venue, Victoria House, Central London (Holborn WC1) in January 2019.
Following the success of the 7th Future Fabrics Expo in January 2018, and in response to demand from both our partner mills and industry visitors, the 2019 8th edition of the Future Fabrics Expo has increased in scale, ambition and vision.
Our aim is to provide the fashion industry with a one stop shop for accessing a broad range of material solutions, and the strategic tools needed to respond to the critical imperative to change current practices presented by the wasteful and polluting impacts of the fashion and textile industries. Since our inception in 2011, the Expo has facilitated and supported sustainable sourcing practices, enabling fashion brands to begin diversifying their fabrics and materials and lowering environmental impacts.
These materials are global qualities, which showcases and enables informed sourcing. We situate this resource in the current sustainability context, providing educational background information and research, aiming to demystify the complexities of sustainable practice. The best practice traditional natural fibres, regenerated cellulosics, naturals and synthetics bio source, and closed loop materials.
Enhancing our curated selection of globally sourced textiles and materials will be ten specially selected best practice mills and suppliers, presenting their materials in their own dedicated space. For the first time we will also showcase several manufacturers and globally recognized certifiers. A new space presenting fashion brands working with materials sourced via the Future Fabrics Expo provides a view of best practice, from materials sourcing through to product realisation.
We will also again be presenting an exciting expanded Innovation Hub, showcasing both emerging and commercially available innovations, featuring a collaboration with Fashion for Good organisation. The Innovation Hub acknowledges the recent surge in research and design that has led to the plethora of materials innovations we are now seeing surface in response to material scarcity, increasing waste streams, the need for transparent and traceable supply chains, and those addressing the cellulose gap for example .
We have coordinated again an inspirational seminar programme, featuring key thought leaders, panel discussions and presentations from innovators, industry insiders, textile producers and designers.
Nearest tube station: Holborn station, Central line. Address: Bloomsbury Square, London WC1B 4DA
Please contact us if you require further information at firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about The 7th Future Fabrics Expo:
To find out more about recent events where the Future Fabrics Expo was showcased such as Copenhagen Fashion Summit, The London Textile Fair and London Fashion Week, please see below:
Copenhagen Fashion Summit:
The London Textile Fair:
London Fashion Week:
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Join SUSS UK – the start-up behind this year’s Sustainable September event for a Saturday networking event dedicated to those working within the sustainable industry. Any brand, big or small, start-up or barely begun, that’s looking to meet likeminded people, expand their contacts within the sustainable industry and form connections for future partnership and collaborations.
This is a networking event for sustainable fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands to make connections, ask difficult questions and collectively find solutions to the environmental and economic problems facing the industry. Bring yourself, an open mind, the willingness to share ideas, advice and experiences, and a little blurb about who you are, what you do and what you’re trying to achieve.
Saturday 26th November – 11am to 2pm.
Work.Life, 1E Mentmore Terrace, London Fields, London, E8 3DQ
SUSS is the brainchild of fashion designer Abigail Grainger and journalist Emma Grace Bailey. The start-up aims to proactively, through events and media engagement, create awareness of sustainability and environmental issues within the fashion and beauty industries. At the cutting edge of popular culture these industries have a responsibility to educate and inform the general public. SUSS hopes to lead the way in this regard.
Join SUSS UK on social media
We’re greatly looking forwards to the 6th Future Fabrics Expo, which will take place on the 25th-26th January 2017, at the beautiful Iris Studios in London.
Since it’s inception in 2011, the Future Fabrics Expo has showcased innovative and traditional commercially viable fibres, fabrics and products that embody a range of sustainable principles and new technologies, sourced from international suppliers and mills who demonstrate a commitment to lowering environmental impact across the textile supply chain. It includes more sustainable alternatives to the widely available conventional fabrics that currently dominate the market, helping fashion companies to begin diversifying their fabric base and lowering their environmental impact at the same time.
The 6th Future Fabrics Expo will again showcase a diverse range of around 1,500 individually sourced fabrics with a reduced environmental impact sourced from dozens of international mills and suppliers. Fabrics on show will be ideally suited for a wide range og market levels and product types, making this the largest and most diverse showcase of commercially available sustainable materials in the industry. Extensive background information on sustainability in fashion and textiles, and the latest textile and processing innovations will also be showcased.
We invite you to come by to discover a diverse range of sustainable materials and resources, where we’ll be on hand to talk to you about sustainable sourcing and materials.
Even if you can’t make it to the expo you can still discover hundreds of sustainable materials from the Future Fabrics Expo by visiting www.futurefabricsvirtualexpo.com. In addition, the whole Future Fabrics Expo can be booked by brands and organisations, to be brought to their HQ or events – please contact us for information.
Find out more about the last expo, and see photos and videos here.
Get a sneak preview of our sustainable materials and resources here.
Sign up to receive the lastest news and event details here.
Visit our website www.thesustainableangle.org
We’ve been increasingly working with international brands and organisations to raise awareness and understanding of materials with a reduced environmental impact, so it was a perfect fit when we were invited to take part in Modint’s Sustainable Material Seminar, supported by ClickNL NextFashion.
The workshop will allow participants hear from a range of speakers, to find out ‘What can you do to make your products more sustainable?’ and ‘What can you communicate?’ among much more. Participants will receive tools and contacts to help create more sustainable businesses.
Visit the workshop to:
You can register to attend here. Please note the workshop will be held in the Netherlands.
Next month we’ll be running an interactive sustainable materials and sourcing workshop, aimed at London based designers and brands. You can find out more below and register for free by e-mailing email@example.com.
You can find out more about GLE workshops by clicking here.
written by Charlotte Turner
2014 was a big year – a year of progress, of discussion, debate, and new learning. Both for us at The Sustainable Angle, and others we had the opportunity to meet and work with throughout the year.
A highlight for us was organising the 4th Future Fabrics Expo at the end of September, hosted once again at London Olympia as part of Fashion SVP. We showed over 1000 sustainable fabrics with a reduced environmental impact, along with new research, tools and resources, and the newly relaunched Future Fabrics Virtual Expo (our online 24/7/365 showcase of hundreds of sustainable materials and resources). It was a real pleasure meeting everyone who visited, and whose positive feedback was instrumental for our 2015 ambitions. 2014 also turned out to be a record year for the expo, with hundreds more registrations, more repeat visits, and another fully packed seminar on sustainable textiles sourcing. We hope (and plan!) to make it even bigger and better in 2015.
Save the date now, to visit us on 29th – 30th September in London. You can keep up to date with our event news by signing up to receive updates here. We will also be announcing the upcoming expo on our website and blog.
In addition to the main Future Fabrics Expo, we enjoyed popping up elsewhere, including at the SB’14 Sustainable Brands Conference in London, where we showed an edited version of the expo to wide range of global industry leaders. We heard about their experiences with and responses to environmental and social sustainability issues – and not just from fashion and textiles companies, but as wide as TV, transportation, beverage and technology sectors. This was a key opportunity to showcase a range of our sustainable materials, to get wider global industries involved in the conversation about the impact our textiles have – and to realise that no matter what industry sector, chances are your business will have something to do with materials, whether through buying them, giving them away, or just in the day to day through the clothes we choose to wear.
2014 also saw us run a multi-brand Future Fabrics Workshop in West London, welcoming designers and buyers from leading global retailers and suppliers, as well as new designers and boutique brands. This was an incredibly valuable chance to share some of our newest research on sustainable materials, and for participants to explore our entire materials collection. If you are interested in future workshops, you can sign up for our newsletter here…
With the same goal, we got involved in the Centre for Sustainable Fashion’s ‘Creative Hub’ initiative, running a workshop for emerging designers based on building a sustainable business, highlighting the use of reduced impact textiles as a key component to best practice. An ideal initiative for start up companies, Creative Hub returns this year with more workshops.
Along with these events, we were delighted to announce the release of the 2nd edition of ‘Fabric for Fashion’, co-authored by Amanda Johnston (curator of TSA’s Future Fabrics Expo), which has been expanded to include man made materials as well as natural fibres, delving in to the history, production methods, and characteristics of a huge range of fibres – a must have along with ‘Fabric for Fashion: The Swatch Book’, which includes over 100 fabric swatches.
Ahead of us in 2015….
We’re sure that 2015 will be just as exciting as 2014, so to get us started, here are just a few of our plans for the year:
written by Charlotte Turner
We’re delighted to announce we will be at the Sustainable Brands Conference in London, from 3rd – 5th November 2014.
We’ll have a stand at the Sustainable Brands Activation Hub, where you can visit us between seminars to discover a range of reduced impact materials from the Future Fabrics Expo, discuss sustainable materials and value chains, and find out about our projects, tools, and events aimed at reducing the environmental footprint of the fashion value chain.
We’re also pleased to be able to offer a discount for our friends, clients, and wider network:
20% off when you register here with the code nwsustangleb14l
You can join nearly 500 of your peers at The Lancaster London Hotel to learn from over 60 change agents in more than 30 workshops, plenaries and breakout discussions.
Sustainable Brands® is the premier global community of brand innovators who are shaping the future of commerce worldwide with focused attention on understanding and leveraging the role of brands in shaping that future.
This year marks the 3rd year the community is gathering in London. Dedicated business leaders from companies such as Unilever, Marks & Spencer, BASF, Heineken and others are planning to participate as well as thought leaders from Guardian Sustainable Business, Forum for the Future, SustainAbility and more. There is a conscious effort to bring unexpected participants together – large multinational corporations, start-ups, NGOs, academia, investors and government agencies – each bringing a unique perspective but shared passion for shifting the world to a sustainable economy.
written by Charlotte Turner
We’re delighted to announce that we will once again be presenting a seminar during the 4th Future Fabrics Expo at Fashion SVP, London, on 28th – 30th September, as part of Fashion SVP’s ‘Sourcing Briefing’ seminar series.
The seminar will take place on Tuesday 30th September at 10.30am near the Future Fabrics Expo (Stand SF1 at Fashion SVP, Olympia Central Exhibition Centre) – to attend simply register for a free event pass here.
Last year our seminar exploring the future of sustainable fashion fabrics was one of the most highly visited sessions during the two-day programme, and the impressive line up this year will also be well worth a visit.
This year, Amanda Johnston, curator and consultant at The Sustainable Angle, will be delivering a seminar looking at how to build sustainability into your textile buying.
The session will cover topics including:
As well as attending the seminar, you will be able to visit the Future Fabrics Expo stand (SF1) to discover hundreds of individually sourced sustainable textiles from dozens of mills around the world, along with extensive background research on sustainability, and some of the latest resources and tools related to sustainability in fashion and textiles.
To attend the Future Fabrics Expo and seminar simply register for a free event pass here.
About Amanda Johnston:
Amanda is curator and consultant at The Sustainable Angle, having curated the sustainable textiles collection and Future Fabrics Expo since its inception. She has a background in design consultancy and education, and has co-authored two books: Fabric For Fashion, and Fabric For Fashion The Swatch Book (both published 2010; 2nd edition 2014). Amanda teaches at the London College of Fashion, and regularly runs sustainable materials workshops, delivering presentations and seminars internationally, both at industry events and in educational forums.
written by Charlotte Turner
We’re delighted to announce that the 4th Future Fabrics Expo will take place for the second time within Fashion SVP, the leading UK fashion sourcing event. The expo is aimed at anybody in the fashion industry looking to discover hundreds of fabrics with a lower environmental impact including organic silk, low impact leather, recycled fibres, and reduced impact processing. We show new sustainable solutions in textiles and fashion production in a curated showcase ideal for designers, buyers, and sustainability professionals from the high street to couture houses and independent designers.
Since its inception in 2011, the Future Fabrics Expo has achieved a winning combination of increasing the visibility of innovative textiles, effectively promoting and communicating textiles with a lower environmental impact to designers and buyers in an accessible design-led format. It has been successful in changing the outdated image of sustainable materials, building up an expanding resource of globally sourced and individually assessed fabrics which are suitable for luxury, retailers and niche fashion brands. As always, the several hundred man-made and natural sustainable fabrics shown in full-length samples will be accompanied by background information explaining the innovative materials, and showcasing best practice production and finishing processes.
The expo will be open from 28th – 30th September 2014 at London Olympia exhibition centre, Hammersmith Rd, London W14 8UX. You can find out how to attend on our website.
written by Charlotte Turner
Our curator Amanda Johnston will be introducing The Sustainable Angle and the impetus behind its inception, exploring how we developed our sustainability criteria, and our rationale for the research and selection of fibre and process categories.
The seminar will examine the most pertinent sustainability issues in textile fibres: for example, our over reliance on cotton and synthetics and their catastrophic impacts. We’ll unpick the minefield of life cycle analysis and look at limiting impacts by understanding how the fibre is produced and processed, and the importance of diversification and traceability.
We’ll be discussing examples of ways forward for a future materials landscape: what are our viable alternatives?
Most importantly, we’ll be looking at the challenge with the production of new fibre types or technologies; and how consensus is needed to prevent the stalling ‘push’ and ‘pull’ on the market.
The Sustainable Future of Textiles seminar will take place on Tuesday 24th September at 10.30am near the Future Fabrics Expo (Stand SD1 at Fashion SVP, Olympia 2 Exhibition Centre).
About Amanda Johnston:
Amanda Johnston is consultant and Curator for The Sustainable Angle. She is also an Associate Lecturer at London College of Fashion on their B.A, M.A and MDES programmes, and has delivered workshops on Sustainable Textiles for the Made By organisation, The Royal College of Art and the British Council. She co-authored two books; Fabric for Fashion and Fabric for Fashion the Swatch Book, both published by Laurence King in 2010.
written by Charlotte Turner
We are delighted to announce that the 3rd Future Fabrics Expo will take place inside the reputable Fashion SVP manufacturing and sourcing fair at the Olympia 2 Exhibition Centre, London W14, on 22 – 24 September 2013.
The expo will be showcased inside the industry guided sourcing event Fashion SVP, which will be focused on near-shore (European and Mediterranean) manufacturing, while The Sustainable Angle’s Future Fabrics Expo will again showcase several hundred globally sourced sustainable textiles. The 3rd Future Fabrics Expo follows in the footsteps of our first two expos hosted in London in 2011 and 2012, exploring diverse ways to reduce environmental impact in the supply chain.
We are looking forward to presenting a wide selection of sustainable fibres, fabrics, and finishes, and getting visitors to learn about and consider their fabrics choices, both at our expo and seminar session – the full programme will be available on www.fashionsvp.com soon.
The 3rd Future Fabrics Expo will offer:
– A curated showcase aimed at designers, buyers and press, including several hundred unique and individually selected natural and man-made sustainable fabrics from diverse global mills.
– An easy to navigate sourcing and research showcase that is designed and curated to introduce textiles for the future with a reduced environmental impact in a jargon-free manner.
– A complimentary offer to Fashion SVP, which will showcase near-shore garment manufacturing exhibitors who make not just for the mid-market, but also for upmarket brands with a global audience.
– The Sustainable Angle will also share some of the latest sustainable innovations in the Fashion SVP conference programme.
– Fashion SVP will include conference sessions, the exhibition and networking opportunities.
written by Charlotte Turner
Last month The Sustainable Angle was invited to take part in the Nike LAUNCH 2020 summit to work together in finding ‘game-changing’ technologies and innovations with the potential to bring about a more sustainable textiles industry.
So we have been asked to help with this search, and are inviting you to apply until July 15th for the LAUNCH Systems Challenge 2013 if you have developed an innovation(s) with potential to scale in 2 years, as well as game-changing early stage technologies and prototypes. Innovations can be business models, financial instruments, technologies and programs that accelerate research, education and capacity building.
“With this LAUNCH System Challenge 2013, LAUNCH seeks innovations that will transform the system of fabrics to one that advances equitable global economic growth, drives human prosperity and replenishes the planet’s resources.”
written by Charlotte Turner
This week social enterprise production company The Rainbow Collective screened ‘The Machinists‘ (2010), a documentary by Hannan Majid and Richard York. The screening was in response to a series of recent tragedies in Bangladesh garment factories including fatal fires and the Rana factory collapse. These events collectively killed over 1,000 people and have prompted action throughout the world.
The documentary follows the Bangladesh National Garment Worker’s Federation and the stories of 3 very different garment factory workers, showing the detrimental effects of poor working and living conditions on the thousands of people in the garment industry, accounting for roughly 80% of Bangladesh’s exports. The already worrying statistics in the documentary have significantly worsened since the recent Rana factory collapse and factory fires in late 2012, bringing garment worker deaths in Bangladesh closer to 1,500 than the 200 stated in 2010.
The Rainbow Collective therefore invites you to attend a special fundraising screening of their acclaimed documentary, followed by discussion with leading campaigners, film makers, and industry representatives. The event will be raising money to support the families bereaved by the Rana factory collapse disaster.
Written by Charlotte Turner
The Sustainable Angle recently visited Paris to attend the bi-annual Premiere Vision and Texworld fabric sourcing shows. It was a chance to catch up with our favourite mills we have been working with over the last couple of years, and an opportunity to meet new and old companies with vastly differing approaches to sustainability.
Our requests for fabrics with a reduced environmental impact were met with varying levels of success and enthusiasm, though the several long conversations we had about the subject did show people’s interest to discuss the subject and really try to evaluate where the industry is now, and where it is heading in terms of sustainability.
The answer to that is not necessarily straightforward when looking at the industry as a whole, but we are pleased to say that we did come away with several new mills to showcase in the next Future Fabrics Expo, showing the continuing efforts towards sustainability.
Aside from hearing different standpoints on sustainability, one key message that was learned from the shows was that if at first you don’t succeed, you really must try and try again – hiding away your sustainable fabrics is not going to increase peoples’ awareness, and the fashion industry really is looking for those fabrics…
You can soon see some of the fantastic sustainable fabrics we came away with, and are looking forward to showing in the Future Fabrics Expo on 7th – 9thNovember.
Register to attend theFuture Fabrics Expo atwww.thesustainableangle.org/futurefabricsexpo
Image source www.lucza.com
The Sustainable Angle have been invited to present the Future Fabrics Expo at the MADE-BY partner conference in Amsterdam on April 17th 2012. We will be discussing ideas on the future of fashion fabrics, and past and upcoming Future Fabrics Expo events. A fabric showroom displaying Future Fabrics Expo samples will allow MADE-BY partner brands to gain a tactile experience of the latest commercially available sustainable fabrics.
written by Charlotte Turner
The Sustainable Angle is a not for profit organisation which initiates and supports projects which contribute to minimising the environmental impact of industry and society.
Our project The Future Fabrics Expo focuses on the fashion industry and how its environmental impact can be lowered through innovation in the textile industry, and novel ideas to transform the fashion system and design practice.
On November 7th – 9th 2012, the second Future Fabrics Expo organised by The Sustainable Angle, will again be hosted by the London College of Fashion with the support of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion. The curated expo will showcase a diverse range of individually selected fabrics, products and ideas related to lowering the environmental impact of the fashion supply chain.
|Future Fabrics Expo 2011|
More information about this event will follow soon, and you can visit our website to find out more about our event and other services.
Along with our website, The Sustainable Angle’s latest news and events can now be read and shared here, at www.thesustainableangle.blogspot.co.uk. You can also join us on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo.