What is Circular Fashion & How Does it Link To QR Code Labels?

Thursday 17th November 2022

When we’re shopping in our favourite clothing store, thousands of miles away from the factories the clothing was made in, it can be challenging for consumers to understand the impact that the fashion industry has on our environment. However, it's time we took a moment to consider how the fashion industry can improve and use the resources that are already available.

Based on the circular economy, Anna Brismar created the concept of circular fashion.

Circular fashion was defined by Brismar in 2017 as "clothes, shoes, or accessories that are designed, sourced, produced, and provided with the intention to be used and circulated in society in their most valuable form for as long as possible, and hereafter return safely to the biosphere when no longer of human use."

Reusing the resources that the fashion industry already has is essentially circular fashion. The design stage of a garment's lifecycle is where circular fashion begins.

Let's use the example of a pair of jeans to help explain the concept. A designer would come up with the idea for the denim in our existing linear fashion system, the production team would work to select the best material, the factories would mass produce the jeans, and retail stores would sell them to the consumer.

These jeans would usually be seen as disposable by the consumer, and at the end of their useful life, they would presumably be destined for landfill.

Every stage in the creation of that pair of jeans points back to their durability and sustainability when considering circular fashion. Designers of circular clothing should think about the following:

  • Is this item of clothing sturdy enough to last for many years?
  • How long do you think the buyer will wear these?
  • Are the resources the production team uses sustainable, and can they be recycled, deconstructed, or biodegraded?
  • Are the employees treated ethically and paid a fair salary in the factories where the jeans are produced?
  • Are the factories causing pollution in the areas where they are located?
  • Can those worn-out jeans be mended or donated to charity, instead of being discarded?

Circular fashion seeks to reduce production waste while simultaneously encouraging consumers to buy less. Basically, buying less equals leaving fewer materials in landfills.

So where do labels come into this?

One of the many ways to help promote the concept of circular fashion is renting pieces of clothing. Similar to borrowing your graduation robe and cap, clothing rental companies let you borrow one or more items for a special occasion for a short period of time. You can typically search clothing on those platforms by categories, labels, or styles to find the item that best suits your requirements and your budget.

Once you have finished borrowing the item of clothing you require, you can simply send it back to the rental company where it will be reused time and time again. Scan the QR code on the fabric label, and be diverted straight to the returns instructions - making the process simple and easy to follow!

There are also many other possibilities with using a QR code on fabric labels. For example, rental companies can link the QR code to an online lookbook which will divert the consumer to a world of fashion inspiration right at their fingertips. 

Contact the Asquith team today on +44 (0) 1752 342809 or info@Asquith-group.com, where we can discuss your innovative ideas and help turn them into reality.