Not only appearances have changed when BESTSELLER for the second time publishes its publicly available Circular Design Guide, aiming to push the circular development in the fashion industry. The guide has just been released with more layers and the latest knowledge on circular design – in line with upcoming legislation and the EU's textile strategy.
Last year, BESTSELLER launched its first circular design guide. With the aim of pushing the development throughout the industry, it was made publicly available. Today, a new version is released, setting ambitious standards for how BESTSELLER will work with and design collections prepared for circularity.
"It was a huge effort to launch our Circular Design Guide last year, and we’re sticking to all the principles and strategies. Now we’re simply expanding with more layers and new knowledge, as there is no doubt that this is a dynamic area where everyone is getting wiser almost daily," says BESTSELLER's Innovation Manager, Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen.
Circularity at the heart of the EU's textile strategy
Circularity is not only on the agenda of BESTSELLER and other fashion companies. It is also a major focus area in the EU. Here, new legislation is currently being prepared due to the EU Commission's textile strategy, which aims to shift towards a climate-neutral and circular economy where products are designed to be more durable, reusable, repairable, and energy-efficient. A shift that BESTSELLER supports.
"Since the first edition, we have collected further knowledge and experiences on what is necessary as well as useful to know for product developers – such as designers – when designing for circularity," says Emma Bach Nørbæk, Project Specialist at BESTSELLER and co-creator of the guide.
"Among other things, we have added a section on circular business models. Although it’s not the product developers who have to implement these business models, it’s extremely important that they have in-depth knowledge of them."
Garments should be used
The new version also includes sections on the product user and product purpose in the design process.
"It’s both straightforward and very complex at the same time – before we can design an actual product, we need to thoroughly understand who we are designing for as well as what purpose the product is supposed to serve. Who uses our product and how and how much do they use it? The least sustainable product is basically the one that is never used," says Emma Bach Nørbæk.
"Garments must be developed, produced and used to last as long as possible. And they should also have a purpose when they’re worn out. In short, a product must always be designed for its entire lifespan.”
BESTSELLER's Circular Design Guide has been created in collaboration with, among others, researchers from Design School Kolding – a partner in the ReSuit project, which BESTSELLER is also a part of. ReSuit, led by the Danish Technological Institute and supported by the Danish Innovation Fund, has brought together a number of key players to push the boundaries of fashion design, recycling technologies and consumer behaviour.
- Circularity in the fashion industry will only be possible through collaboration across industry level.
- Circular Design Consortium: To accelerate impact and foster consistency across the industry, we are working with ASOS, H&M Group and Zalando on circular design using the Ellen MacArthur Foundation's vision of a circular economy for fashion as a basis. At first, the consortium's ambition was to align approaches – such as securing agreement on circular design terminology - and to learn from each other. Now the plan is to expand the scope to drive further impact and scale.
- BESTSELLER has an ultimate ambition of becoming 'circular by design'. Therefore, the Danish fashion house has – through its investment arm Invest FWD – invested in a number of innovators that support a circular economy. With more to come.
- Cross-industry collaboration is also a contributory cause to BESTSELLER choosing to make its circular design tool publicly available to anyone interested.
- BESTSELLER's Circular Design Guide is available for free at www.bestseller.com.