The Sustainable Angle researches and presents high quality fashion fabrics which are produced with the intention of reducing environmental impact throughout the fashion and textiles supply chain.
Here you can find out more information about the Future Fabrics Expo, the annual event where these fabrics are showcased to buyers, designers, press and students, and details about how to exhibit.
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The Future Fabrics Expo showcases and promotes innovative and commercially viable fibres, fabrics and products that embody a range of sustainable principles and new technologies, sourced from suppliers and mills who demonstrate a commitment to lowering environmental impact across the textile supply chain.
The intention is to creatively inspire designers and fashion brands as well as educating them about the newest developments in sustainable fabrics and ending outdated cliches (mostly the assumption that sustainable fabrics are either low quality or are mainly artisanal fabrics).
In order to demonstrate that responsible fashion design goes beyond using sustainable fabrics, each expo goes further than materials, showcasing new ideas that look at improvements throughout the whole supply chain, as well as novel approaches to transforming the fashion design system and fashion design practice.
Over the last few years developments in technology producing textiles with a low environmental impact have generated sophisticated new qualities in fashionable fabrics, that are suitable for high fashion and are able to withstand stringent quality controls typically used by the fashion industry. Bringing these fabrics to the attention of as many fashion designers and their brands as possible is leading the fashion industry to catch on to the zeitgeist, and demonstrates that it is possible to lower the environmental footprint without compromising on style or quality.
The expo shows 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.
Sourcing fabrics of high quality that also offer clear sustainability gains can be an onerous and time consuming task, as no fair or marketplace is showing such fabrics with sufficient transparent production information in one place at present. The expo features sample lengths of fabrics rather than swatches allowing designers and buyers to experience the handle and drape.
Targeting mid to high end influential fashion brands and engaging them with the sustainability agenda will have a trickle down effect on the high street.
The concept and scope of the expo develops and expands as this growing market continues to progress, in order to continuously look ahead and showcase the most innovative solutions to current and preempted environmental issues.
The Future Fabrics Expo has several aims related to the knowledge, perceptions, and use of sustainable textiles in fashion which include:
Fabrics are often the first step in the designer’s creative journey, and are therefore a good starting point for a more conscious and responsible approach to the creation of fashion products.
There is a pressing need to transform the way clothes are made. Our choice of materials has an impact upon a product’s entire life and therefore making intelligent and creative sourcing decisions can ultimately help to create clothing with minimal negative impacts upon the environment, animals and human welfare. Eliminating wasteful practices, reducing electricity, water and chemicals consumption can have a positive effect on the balance sheet and moreover, the adoption of an innovative future ready approach to business can help to attract a talented and loyal workforce as well as increasing consumer loyalty.
The current dominance of cotton and polyester fibres in the market is unsustainable; together they account for over 80% of the world’s clothing output. This lack of diversity has led to growing problems such as excessive water consumption, pollution, loss of soil fertility and biodiversity and an over dependency on oil. Fabrics that offer innovative alternatives are part of a better future – one in which we are able to manage our resources wisely and cost effectively.
The future lies in taking a holistic view where sustainable fashion fabrics play an important role as part of the whole fashion system, which needs to undergo widespread improvement to reach long term sustainability.