Relooping Fashion – we make fashion circular

20.2.2017

In Relooping Fashion we’ve designed how the material flows and the business ecosystem could operate in the future circulating from the consumer back to the consumer based on the circular economy loops.

The core idea of Relooping fashion:
1. Clothes are designed for a longer life and use. To extend the life cycle of the garment, the first loop of circular economy focuses on maintenance, repair and modification of clothes.

2. On the next loop the focus is on reuse;
garments that are still in good condition should be reused through, for example, second-hand shops and renting or leasing services.

3. When the garment is not suitable for reuse anymore, they can be repurposed
as textile material for other purposes and eventually recycled into a new fiber and clothes through mechanical or chemical recycling technologies.

Relooping Fashion is Ethica’s long-term development project
Ethica leads the project together with VTT, Technical Research Centre of Finland and the project is funded by Tekes, the national innovation fund. The closed loop value network is created through the following partners: Suez, Metropolitan Reuse Center, Repack, Lindström, Seppälä, Touchpoint and Pure Waste.

It’s not viable to do it alone. A closed loop value network is created together with partners.

Circular textile flows create new business
The circular economy approach creates a multitude of new business opportunities. Relooping Fashion explores more efficient textile waste collection, separation, industrial processing (for removing e.g. buttons and zippers and shredding the material) and chemical recycling and manufacturing new fiber from recycled material. All of these create new opportunities for businesses. In addition to mapping out efficient circular flows, creating shared value across the network has been one of the focus areas of the project.

Environmentally friendly & novel technology as a starting point
A starting point for creating a closed loop system can vary a great deal. In this case the starting point was the VTT’s unique technology, through which old cotton unsuitable for reuse can be processed through using chemical dissolution technology for creating new fiber. Imported virgin cotton can be replaced through a locally produced material, which can be practically recycled over and over again without losing the high quality. This new technology saves water over 70% and has a 40-50% smaller carbon footprint compared to virgin cotton.

International recognitions
Relooping Fashion got the ‘Highly Commanded’ award at the prestigious Circulars 2016 competition. The jury included high-profile members such as , the circular economy pioneer Ellen MacArthur and creator of Cradle to Cradle philosophy William McDonough. The project was also chosen as the only Finnish case-example to the Sustainia 100 list. This annual publication comprises 100 most innovative initiatives across the globe furthering the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Relooping Fashion – closed-loop textile recycling

Read more: http://reloopingfashion.org

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