Abstract

The environmental impact of clothing could be reduced if average garment lifetimes were increased. The paper explores the design and supply chain implications of clothing longevity, adapting models from sustainable clothing design research, and evidence from interviews and expert roundtables. The research concludes that the process of design for longevity could be adopted by clothing retailers and brands, but that the principles behind adopting this strategy lack credence in industry, because the mandate to do so, and robust business models, are lacking. The paper identifies a range of conflicting priorities between commercial and sustainable practice that must be addressed to reduce the environmental impact of clothing by extending its useful life, and makes recommendations for industry and future research. However, the limitations to adopting more sustainable practice relate to fashion and market segment, are systemic within the clothing supply chain and attempts to resolve these require a commercial imperative.

Keywords:

fiction; participatory prototyping; participatory design, social games.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Jun 17th, 12:00 AM

Extending clothing lifetimes: an exploration of design and supply chain challenges.

The environmental impact of clothing could be reduced if average garment lifetimes were increased. The paper explores the design and supply chain implications of clothing longevity, adapting models from sustainable clothing design research, and evidence from interviews and expert roundtables. The research concludes that the process of design for longevity could be adopted by clothing retailers and brands, but that the principles behind adopting this strategy lack credence in industry, because the mandate to do so, and robust business models, are lacking. The paper identifies a range of conflicting priorities between commercial and sustainable practice that must be addressed to reduce the environmental impact of clothing by extending its useful life, and makes recommendations for industry and future research. However, the limitations to adopting more sustainable practice relate to fashion and market segment, are systemic within the clothing supply chain and attempts to resolve these require a commercial imperative.

 

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