Iris van Herpen merging technological innovation and fashion.
Iris van Herpen F/W 2011, image via Harper's Bazaar
Written by: Hanna Shaw

With the rapid rate that technology across industries has improved over the past thirty years, it doesn’t come as a surprise that sustainable innovations are leaving their mark, revolutionizing and constantly re-defining what we know of as “fashion.” Brands are taking it upon themselves to produce products in more efficient and ethically responsible ways. Here are some unconventional methods employed by clothing and software companies that have married sophistication with sustainable innovation.

Sustainable Innovations that Deserve 👏👏

Sustainable Clothing Made Out of Fruit

Italian brand Orange Fiber developed technology that is able to convert the waste produced from citrus fruit juice into a silky fabric made entirely out of plant cellulose. To date, they have been used in sustainable partnerships with Ferragamo’s Capsule Collection and H&M’s Exclusive Conscious Collection in 2019. Check out our blog on eco-friendly fabrics for more sustainable fabrics you can support.

H&M Conscious Exclusive Collection made with sustainable innovations
Image via H&M's Spring 2019 Conscious Exclusive Collection

Digital Platform to Help Improve the Recycling Process of Clothes

circular.fashion provides designers the means to produce circular garments. In addition to combining circular design, circular retail models, and closed loop recycling technologies in their software, they also provide training to fashion brands to implement more sustainable business practices

  • Closed loop recycling: the process of continuously recycling and reusing materials
YEEZY Foam RNNR “Ararat” sneakers using sustainable innovations
YEEZY Foam RNNR “Ararat” sneakers

Increased Use of Machine Learning in Garment Production

Tommy Hilfiger, IBM, and FIT formed a partnership in 2018 to create an Artificial Intelligence System. This system intends to reduce the costs and wastes of clothing manufacturing by providing data projections, and allows the fashion house to make more pragmatic decisions towards product development.

Biodegradable Shoes

Kanye West’s brand YEEZY released a collection of Croc-like clogs in June 2020 made of algae. They can completely disintegrate in landfills over time if it comes into contact with a specific type of bacteria. If this doesn’t embody #WEARYOURPURPOSE, I don’t know what else would.

Recyclable “Smart” Paper

To combat the excessive waste caused by packaging materials, the company PAPTIC released a collection of bio-based packaging materials that are a substitute to plastics. According to their website, PAPTIC products are recyclable, reusable, and biodegradable.

  • Bio-based: a product that is made up in composition of a significant or full number of biological products or materials.

App that Rates Fashion Brands on Their Degree of Ethicality

Good on You evaluates thousands of brands on their actions towards people, plants, and animals. This is based on an approach that factors in industry and governmental standards, certifications, and public information to help consumers spend their money with more intention.

Good on You: sustainable innovation to inform users of the ethicality of fashion brands
Image via Good on You

Sustainable Innovations and the Fashion Industry

When used as forces of good, the intersection of fashion and technology (aka sustainable innovations in the fashion industry) can produce a lasting positive impact on consumers, producers, and the environment alike. It gives the fashion industry a chance to reduce its carbon footprint by moving down the waste hierarchy, starting from prevention before resorting to waste disposal (read our blog on waste hierarchy to learn more). It is the responsibility of every one of us, whether we produce, consume, or do both, to make choices that will lead to favorable results in the future, but I don’t mean this to the extreme. Not every single product that we buy should be made out of fruit fiber. However, we do owe it to our one home and planet to put our money where our mouth is, and go for ethically sourced and environmentally friendly creations when given the option.

Via ÀLA.HAUSSE‘s Multi-functional and Multi-purposeful Fashion Ecosystem- BUY/SELL/RENT/LEND/ (swap BETA 2021) mobile application, INDIVIDUALS & brands ( BETA 2021) are encouraged to REBUY, RESELL, REUSE and UP-CYCLE their personal “Clossets” aka Clothing Assets, along with overstock inventory and samples. Through this consumerism habit shift we indirectly slow down the urgency on fashion’s carbon footprint, aiding sustainability as a whole.

BETA Early Access Application Now Open SS21 iOS Android 


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