“The Centre for Sustainable Fashion offers a platform of expertise, insight and innovation that will affect change in the way that we work.”
Harold Tillman, Chairman British Fashion Council and London College of Fashion alumnus
For press and media enquiries please contact Rebecca Munro in the media relations team: email@example.com
Alex McIntosh speaks to the New York Times about fast fashion in “How Zara Grew Into the World’s Largest Fashion Retailer” (9 November, 2012)……read more
Tony Ryan is Interviewed by Frederika Whitehead of the Observer, The Guardian “Tony Ryan: We can use jeans to clean up our cities’ air” (21 October 2012)……read here
Style Notes, “Go Green: Sneakers aus Lederhosen” discusses the ESMOD “Sustainability in Fashion” Graduate Show, where Dilys Williams, director of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion was a jury member (19 October 2012)…..read more
Dash Magazine, “MA Graduate Show ‘Sustainability in Fashion’ – ESMOD Berlin 2012″ discussed the ESMOD showcase in Berlin where Dilys Williams was a member of the judging panel……read more
“M.A. Graduate Show ‘Sustainability in Fashion’” photos of Cara Sumpton’s work…..see here
Photos of ESMOD MA Graduate Cara Sumpton’s work…..see here
Photos of ESMOD MA Graduate Show, including Cara Sumpton’s work, the graduate chosen by a panel of judges to be mentored by Dilys Williams…….see here
Alex McIntosh discusses biodegradable materials and sustainable fashion with Susan Carpenter of the Los Angeles Times (14 October 2012)…..read more
The Financial Times ”Clean Jeans: Wash Pollution Away” (16 October 2012)……read more
Graduate Fashion Germany, “Sustainability in Fashion | MA ESMOD Berlin” shows students introducing their Master projects, photos of the Graduate Show and Dilys Williams, member of the jury panel…..read more
Radio 5 Live, Naked Science. Interview with Tony Ryan (1 October 2012) available to download here
Nimisha, Sachdev reviews Catclo for FrenchTribune.com “CatClo to Ward of Nitrogen Oxide from Air” (29 September 2012)…….read here
Discovery News “Rinse Cycle Turns Clothing into Pollution Buster” (28 September)……read here
Red Orbit “Clearing The Air With Pollution-busting Laundry Additive” (28 September 2012) ….read more
EcoTextile News “Clothing additive to clean up air” (27 September 2012)…..read here
The Engineer “CatClo-treated fabric removes nitrogen oxides from the air” (27 September 2012)…..read here
Digital Trends “Laundry detergent that creates pollution-eating clothing moves towards commercialisation” (27 September 2012)….read here
PopSci “Your Clothes Could Soon Scrub Pollution Directly from the Air ” (27 September 2012)……read more
Scientist Live “Pollution-busting laundry additive gets set to clean up” …….read here
Paul Johnson, Engineering and Technology Magazine “Pollution-busting laundry agent to help clean up environment” (27 September 2012)…….read here
PhysOrg “Pollution-busting laundry additive gets set to clean up” (26 September 2012)…..read here
Amanda Kooser, CNET “Laundry additive turns shirts, pants into pollution eaters” (26 September 2012)…….read here
Catalytic Clothing’s original funder the EPSRC published a press release about the project (26 September 2012) ….. read here
Dilys Williams with Lou Stoppard, Frances Corner and Marion Hume discuss the Fashion East show live as it happens (15 September 2012)…….watch here
Helen Story discusses the future of fashion with Madhumita Venkataramanan of Wired Magazine in “The Big Question: What technological innovations are taking place in fashion?” (16 August 2012)…….read more
“The future of fashion is one where science and technology help to tackle problems such as monitoring health and detecting diseases. Scientist Tony Ryan and I are developing Catalytic Clothing, which harnesses the power of a catalyst through the laundry process to deliver technology to the surface of our clothing that can purify the air that we breathe.”
Dilys Williams views on fashion highlighted by Lauren Laverne in the Observer (8 January 2012)…..read more
It might sound silly describing clothes as objects and perhaps sillier still as ones that you could own – and wear – indefinitely, but why should it? A while ago I interviewed Dilys Williams, head of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion at the London College of Fashion, who told me there are three problems the fashion industry needs to address in order to make itself less environmentally damaging. The first two are (reasonably) obvious: its ecological impact and social-justice issues (if you’d like examples of both, look up Greenpeace’s report last year from Xintang in China, the “jeans capital of the world”). The third is more abstract but, Williams argues, the most important, and key to addressing the other two: the clothes we buy must mean something to us. That is what stops the cycle of consumer bulimia.
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) announces partnership with Fashioning the Future Awards to promote biodiversity in fashion (June 2011)…read more
Alex McIntosh on greening the high street in an ethical fashion special for The Ecologist (May 2011)…read more
“High street labels often try to market consumerism as a way to happiness but you don’t really need 300 t-shirts in your cupboard. If people bought one high quality t-shirt for £30, they wouldn’t have to buy 10 for £3 each.
Designers have the ability to change the way people engage with fashion and think about things.” Alex McIntosh
Dr Kate Fletcher interview on the Local Wisdom project and sustainable fashion for TakePart (May 2011)…read more
How did you become interested in sustainable fashion? What was it that drew you there, as opposed to other fields of sustainability?
I was drawn into fashion in particular partly because that was something I ‘knew’ about practically (I have been making clothes since my early teens) and also because I intuitively understood it was so much more than fabric and thread: identity formation, creative expression, communication…
You coined the term “Slow Fashion.” For people who are new to sustainable fashion, what does “slow fashion” mean?
Slow fashion is a vision of sustainability in the fashion sector based on different values and goals to the present day. Slow fashion is not a descriptor of speed in the industry, but a different worldview that promotes a variety of fashion production and consumption, and that celebrates the pleasure and cultural significance of fashion within biophysical limits.
Your project “Local Wisdom” incorporates a lot of different uses and meanings of clothing. Can you elaborate on that project—what inspired it? Why do you think it’s important?
This project was inspired by the Shodh Yatra that take place in India, where people gather inventions and knowledge by walking between different communities. I think it’s important because as a project it values the insights and practices of users and so develops understanding about sustainability and fashion that are different to those generated by commercial interests—and build a richer; and potentially more resourceful and satisfying response to these challenges.
You speak often at events. What do you find the public is most curious about? What do institutions (schools, nonprofits, businesses) want you to speak on?
The public has huge curiosity about the subject. In recent times, I have had a few questions about the apparent paradox that is fashion and sustainability; particularly when fashion is understood only in terms of trends or a business model where success is based on ever expanding growth of sales of fashion production.
Recently I have been talking a good deal about new models, systems change and alternative practice for designers. Many themes define the different approaches to fashion that appear in Local Wisdom.
You play a lot of roles—designer, consultant, writer, Reader. What’s one of your favorite things to do in your line of work?
I enjoy almost all of my work (perhaps with the exception of admin!); though I particularly enjoy exploring a new set of ideas in response to David Orr’s challenge: what would sustainability have (the fashion sector) do?
What advice do you have for someone who wants to live a more sustainable existence with regard to their fashion?
Try to develop both a mental and physical engagement with your clothes.
Alex McIntosh discusses Livia Firth’s Green Carpet Challenge and sustainable fashion in The Fresh Outlook (April 2011)…read more
“We are delighted Livia undertook the green carpet challenge! It’s great that she is shining a light on the fact that sustainable fashion is no longer a niche market and that all designers should be looking at how they can make their designs more sustainable, thus safeguarding the future of the fashion industry.
Sustainable fashion shouldn’t be seen as separate to mainstream fashion – sustainable fashion is about re-thinking the way we design to use up less of the world’s resources and ensure the people employed in the industry are paid and treated fairly. All fashion (no matter if it’s sustainably produced or not) should be led by good design – and this is what the Centre for Sustainable Fashion has been championing – any brand and any designer can be more sustainable in their outlook.” Alex McIntosh
Dr Kate Fletcher’s Local Wisdom project at the California College of the Arts’ Craft Forward Conference in the San Francisco Chronicle (April 2011)…read more
Dilys featured in the H&M Conscious Collection S/S 2011 video presentation (March 2011)…see more
“People are starting to think differently about design, so they’re not just thinking about designing a product and what it will look like on the catwalk. They’re actually thinking about where it comes from, all the possibilities, what need it is actually fulfilling for the wearer, what fashion is really about.
Fashion hasn’t always been defined as consumption. Fashion has been defined as something that is beautiful, something that people want to use as a way to communicate with each other. So let’s look forward at being able to find ways of doing that, and therefore sustainability will keep evolving and changing which is great.” Dilys Williams
Our MA students are highly commended and interviewed in SIX Magazine (March 2011)…read more
Director Dilys Williams talks about polyester on BBC Radio 4′s Woman’s Hour (March 2011)…read more
CSF and Dr Kate Fletcher commended during a debate at the House of Lords (March 2011)…read more
Student work commended at the LCF MA Exhibition on SHOWstudio (February 2011)…read more
MA student curated exhibition Fashion Footprints: Sustainable Approaches on BBC Bristol (January 2011)…read more
Dilys Williams’ fashion prediction for the next 25 years in The Observer (January 2011)…read more
“Fashion is such an important part of the way in which we communicate our identity to others, and for a very long time it’s meant dress: the textile garments on our body. But in the coming decades, I think there’ll be much more emphasis on other manifestations of fashion and different ways of communicating with each other, different ways of creating a sense of belonging and of making us feel great about ourselves.
We’re already designing our identities online – manipulating imagery to tell a story about ourselves. Instead of meeting in the street or in a bar and having a conversation and looking at what each other is wearing, we’re communicating in some depth through these new channels. With clothing, I think it’s possible that we’ll see a polarisation between items that are very practical and those that are very much about display – and maybe these are not things that you own but that you borrow or share.
Technology is already being used to create clothing that fits better and is smarter; it is able to transmit a degree of information back to you. This is partly driven by customer demand and the desire to know where clothing comes from – so we’ll see tags on garments that tell you where every part of it was made, and some of this, I suspect, will be legislation-driven, too, for similar reasons, particularly as resources become scarcer and it becomes increasingly important to recognise water and carbon footprints.
However, it’s not simply an issue of functionality. Fashion’s gone through a big cycle in the last 25 years – from being something that was treasured and cherished to being something that felt disposable, because of a drop in prices. In fact, we’ve completely changed our relationship towards clothes and there’s a real feeling among designers who I work with that they’re trying to work back into their designs an element of emotional content.
I think there’s definitely a place for technology in creating a dialogue with you through your clothes.” Dilys Williams
CSF Business Support Programme designers at the Estethica Spring 2011 Press Day on Girl A La Mode (January 2011)…read more
CSF featured on Italian Vogue (December 2010)…read more
Dilys Williams on the panel at the Estethica Spring 2011 Press Day on Ecouterre (December 2010)…read more
Dilys Williams, Professor Sandy Black and the MA students in a euronews programme ‘Fashion: if green was the new black?’ (November 2010)…read more
“It isn’t a product, or a piece of clothing or a dress that is or isn’t sustainable. It’s how it’s made, how it’s worn, how it’s looked after, what happens to it when you finish with it, that’s what makes it sustainable or not. We look at materials, we look at the processes, so you think about production methods, you think about the people involved. So if the designer at the very beginning thinks about how something is going to be washed or how something is going to be cared for, all of these things are actually new business opportunities as well.” Dilys Williams
“Fashion is very wasteful. It’s endemically wasteful, and a lot is made speculatively. So we’re really trying to reduce first of all the amount that is made, and what is made is made because people want it, so that there is less product. And then the product process is also much more sustainable because it’s a one step process.” Professor Sandy Black
Shared Talent: Sourcing sustainable fabrics in India just got easier on Tree Hugger (November 2010) …read more
Livia Firth discusses Shared Talent India on Vogue online (November 2010) …read more
Shared Talent India feature by Ecouterre (November 2010)…read more
Centre’s Stand at London Fashion Week and Business Support Programme designers featured in Amelia’s Magazine S/S 2011 Esthetica Review (October 2010) …read more
CSF Bulletin featured in Bachelor of Arts “The Complete List of Eco-Fashion Blogs” (October 2010) …read more
Shared Talent India in Ecotextile News magazine (October 2010)…read more
Centre’s London Fashion Week Stand Business Support Programme designers highlighted by Ecouterre (September 2010)…read more
Centre’s London Fashion Week Stand in Ecotextile News magazine (September 2010)…read more
Shared Talent India featured on Given London blog (September 2010)…read more
Centre’s London Fashion Week Stand Business Support Programme designers featured in Estethica photo shoot at the Ecologist (September 2010)…read more
Shared Talent India Roundtable featured on Livia Firth’s Eco Age blog (September 2010)…read more
CSF’s Stand at London Fashion Week and Business Support Programme designers featured in TreeHugger’s 5 Eye Catching Prints at Estethica (September 2010)…read more
Centre’s Stand at London Fashion Week and Business Support Programme designers featured in Green My Style (July 2010)
CSF Highly Commended in the Green Gown Awards 2010 Research and Development Category (June 2010)…read more
Centre’s Business Support Programme featured on artsLondon (June 2010)…read more
Centre Director Dilys Williams looks at how fast fashion is changing in Our Future Planet (June 2010) …read more
“We’re seeing real fatigue among consumers around the idea of having more and more stuff. There’s a drive to entice us to buy, but people are bored with their purchases almost before they get them home. We’ve reached a point where the cycle has become monotonous.” Dilys Williams
CSF in article on Harold Tillman’s campaign to aid ethical fashion brands in UK Style News (May 2010)…read more
CSF in article on Harold Tillman’s campaign for tax breaks for ethical fashion brands in Fashion Monitor (May 2010)…read more
MA Student Julia Roebuck helps organise clothes swaps at the College in the Guardian (April 2010)…read more
Grazia praise the Centre (April 2010)…read more
Centre Coordinator Nina Stevenson talks about Brazil’s World Cup football team’s ‘green’ and yellow strip in the Guardian (February 2010) …read more
Livia Firths green carpet challenge – video featuring Dilys and CSF designers (January 2010) …read more
Centre Business Support Manager Alex McIntosh discusses how to calculate the Carbon Foot Print of a cotton T-Shirt (December 2009)…read more
Head of London College of Fashion Dr Frances Corner talks sustainability in Drapers Record (June 2009) …read more
Centre Director Dilys Williams judges the Innovation competition run by Ethical Fashion Forum, with fellow judge Roland Mouret. Reported on Catwalk Fashion (June 2009)…read more
Laura Queening took park in Shared Talent: South Africa, here her work is profiled in sofeminine (May 2009) …read more
Ethical fashion design competition launches in Drapers (April 2009) …read more
Coordinator Nina Baldwin talks about what she sees in the mirror (March 2009) …read more
Rohan Kale showcases MA collection in Edie (January 2009) …read more
Earth Matters – Friends of the Earth Magazine, issue 71. Dilys Williams in conversation with Nicola Baird. Contact us for more information. (Autumn 2008)
Fashioning the Future 2008 fashion show in Edie (October 2008)…read more
Opinion in Drapers on ethical consumption in Drapers (August 2008)…read more
Lucy Siegle talks about the launch of CSF in the Observer (August 2008)…read more
LCF students work with Oxfam in exciting launch of new boutique shops in the Times (May 2008)…read more
Dilys Williams in the Times Higher Education Supplement on the launch of the CSF and the future of green fashion (May 2008)…read more
“It is sad. I went into a shop the other day and the only organic babywear was oatmealy stuff with ‘organic’ written on it. Sustainable fashion is not just about using organic cotton.
The global fashion industry is worth hundreds of millions of dollars worldwide and employs more than 26 million people. In the UK, 90 per cent of the clothes we buy are imported, but all of them are thrown away. The average person throws away £12,000 worth of clothes over a lifetime, and 80 per cent of the clothes we buy every year are being sent to landfill. Around 80 per cent of the impact of a piece of clothing is defined at design stage. Sustainable fashion can be designing something using a material that can be washed less frequently, or that can be recycled, or is made so that you want to hold on to it for a long time. One of the exciting breakthroughs we’ve been working on is user-centred design. We’ve got body-scanning equipment here and foot scanning, so patterns can be digitally made, perfect to the customer’s body shape. If consumers are involved in the process then hopefully when they receive their beautiful pieces, they will feel better wearing them and will want to hang on to them. For many years I saw students coming through the education system preparing themselves for the current job market and gearing themselves to particular retailers. Now industry is coming to them.” Dilys Williams
The launch of CSF covered by Edie.net (April 2008)…read more
“People can come to us from all aspects of industry and education and we can help all of those involved in sustainable fashion to be signposted to each other. We’ve heard the saying ‘necessity is the mother of innovation’. We are in a place of necessity but we are also in a place of fantastic opportunity.” Dilys Williams
Close up on Dilys Williams in The Guardian (April 2008)…read more
“I will only wear something that I trust and feel I can identify with the whole design and production process it has been through. I would never wear mass-produced product that I knew was just being sold on price only, so I wouldn’t even step through the door of certain major retailers. It makes shopping easier when you edit out the bad choices. Having said that, I’m sure I have things in my wardrobe that I bought before I had such an awareness of environmental issues, but I wouldn’t throw them away just for the sake of trying to prove that I am holier than thou.” Dilys Williams
Sainbury’s support London College of Fashion in futuristic textiles in The Guardian (February 2008)…read more