Copenhagen’s Lokomotivværkstedet has been buzzing with excitement all day. While the entrance to the right has been busy purchasing and selling BESTSELLER collections with next year’s spring and summer items, the entrance straight ahead has been visited by more than 100 spectators, all interested in circular design.

Here, throughout the day, nine BESTSELLER brands have all been in the spotlight: JACK & JONES, LIL ’ATELIER, NAME IT, NOISY MAY, OBJECT, PIECES, SELECTED FEMME, SELECTED HOMME, VILA. They have each presented their circular capsules in front of a panel of judges composed by representatives from Global Fashion Agenda, Zalando and Lifestyle & Design Cluster as well as Design School Kolding.

And the winner is…

BESTSELLER colleagues have taken on the 'Circular Design Challenge' to become more skilled and knowledgeable about designing for circularity, and at the same time to be able to pass on this knowledge about processes, options, improving initiatives and limitations to external stakeholders.

The newly crowned winner of the Challenge is SELECTED Femme/Homme.

"It was a very torn and conflicted panel of judges who chose SELECTED as the winner. We were impressed by the level of details, collaboration and thought in all brands and designs presented, but we felt that SELECTED are really showing the way through an extensive collection, which fits all the criteria from BESTSELLER’s Circular Design Guide. We hope this experience will inspire all brands to continue this circular design path and share and scale learnings and solutions within the group,” says co-judge Serena Bonomi, Zalando’s Senior Manager Circular Business Design.

She is backed by BESTSELLER's Innovation Manager, Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen.

"The judges really had to make a difficult choice, but there is no doubt that SELECTED have really acquainted themselves with the principles of designing for circularity – and simultaneously they were able to convey this insight through their capsule and presentation," she says and continues:

“Our primary focus today, or throughout the Challenge, has not been to find a winner. It has been to share knowledge and learn a lot about designing for circularity, which everyone can benefit from going forward. Just like our publicly available Circular Design Guide. But with that said, SELECTED definitely deserve to celebrate the win and enjoy their amazing first prize.”

Pioneering first prize

The immediate reaction from the winner was both joy and pride – and modesty:

“We truly believe that we are all winners as all brands will go home with something that will push us forward. Knowledge sharing – as we have done today – is amazing and I really applaud that. With that being said, we are also very happy to take the first place and are looking very much forward to getting to work with the awesome first prize,” says Louise Lund, SELECTED’s Sustainability Manager.

In addition to fame and glory, SELECTED wins a fine first prize: the brand will be the first to use the game-changing Cycora® material in a pilot collection. Cycora® is nothing less than a regenerated alternative to conventional polyester from the LA-based innovation company Ambercycle. In other words, Ambercycle converts worn-out textiles from consumers into new polyester. In fact, their pioneering process can separate and purify post-consumer textile waste at a molecular level to create new virgin-quality fibres – Cycora®.

"Ambercycle's vision is to build an infinite ecosystem for fashion circularity, and since BESTSELLER's ultimate ambition is to become 'circular by design', we believe it's the perfect prize for the winner of our Circular Design Challenge. We are very much looking forward to seeing this innovation unfolded in a commercial collection next year,” says Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen.

Stop by and learn more about circular design – for free

In the following days – until and including Friday 12 August – it is possible to visit BESTSELLER's circularity exhibition, which is open and free for anyone interested.

Here, all Challenge styles are presented, along with additional information on circular design and there are free copies of BESTSELLER's Circular Design Guide available.

Additionally, CIFF attendees can also visit the Lifestyle & Design Cluster exhibition – Circular Fashion & Textile Days in Bella Center. Here, great circular examples from Danish fashion companies that are leading the way in the green transition are presented. The BESTSELLER brand SELECTED participates as an exhibitor.

Judges: Serena Bonomi (Zalando), Cathryn Anneka Hall (Kolding Designskole), Lone Haumann (Lifestyle & Design Cluster), Holly Syrett (Global Fashion Agenda) Winners from SELECTED: Louise Lund (Sustainability Manager), Magnus Löppe (Design Lead), Sandra Wrochniak (Designer)
Circular Design Guide

• The event and the exhibitions are based on BESTSELLER's publicly available Circular Design Guide, which contains both detailed models and selected case examples.
• The guide was created in collaboration with, among others, Design School Kolding, a partner in the ReSuit project – where BESTSELLER is a partner as well. ReSuit, led by the Danish Technological Institute and supported by the Innovation Fund, has brought together a number of key players to push the boundaries of fashion design, recycling technologies and consumer behaviour.

Circular Design Challenge

• Circular Design Challenge is likewise initiated as a part of ReSuit as well as BESTSELLER's ultimate ambition of becoming 'circular by design'.
• BESTSELLER has invested in Ambercycle through Invest FWD, which represents the ongoing efforts to reduce material impact through more and better recycling.
• The Cycora® collection will be available in 2023.