Circular Design for Fashion


Cowes, United Kingdom

Ellen MacArthur foundation’s new book redefines the industry’s future.

Leaders from across the fashion world have joined forces with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for a new book designed to inspire a creative-led transformation of the industry.

Available starting today, December 2, 2021, ‘Circular Design for Fashion’ brings together some of fashion’s leading voices to set out new opportunities for creatives across the industry. The book tackles common myths and sets out the fundamental principles of circular design, which go beyond designing single products and services and instead focus on how to reshape the whole system. It explores how creatives can implement circular economy principles and demonstrates that by viewing waste and pollution as design flaws, circular design can become the new norm.

Through examples of circular design in practice and with insights from luxury brands including Gucci and Vivienne Westwood, independent labels such as Kevin Germanier and Marine Serre, high-street giants including Gap Inc, H&M Group and PVH Corp., pioneers of the virtual fashion experience – Alvanon and The Fabricant, and clothing resale and rental specialists such as thredUP and Vestiaire Collective, the book shows how creatives can transform the future of fashion, from being a major cause of global challenges like climate change and biodiversity loss, to being part of the solution.

Commenting on the book Stella McCartney said: “The circular economy offers exciting business opportunities whilst having a positive effect on the planet. The fashion industry needs to embrace it.”

© The Ellen MacArthur Foundation
© The Ellen MacArthur Foundation

Sara Sozzani Maino, Head of Vogue Talents, added: “Now is the time to reinvent ourselves even further. The circular economy can take us beyond simply trying to do less harm — it is a bigger idea, one that has the power to inspire a new generation of designers …it is an opportunity to create a fashion industry that is part of the solution to challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution, and an industry that can thrive in the long term.”

“Circular design is the glue that holds materials, design and business models together. It empowers designers and ignites change. It motivates creatives to look at products in an entirely different way and enables access to options beyond selecting organic or recycled materials,” says Esther Verburg – EVP, Sustainable Business and Innovation at Tommy Hilfiger, owned by PVH Corp.

Elodie Rousselot, Circular Design Programme Manager at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said: “Every year the fashion industry produces more and more clothing that is worn less and less. This wasteful and polluting way of doing business is fuelling climate change and biodiversity loss and cannot continue in the long term. But, as this book shows, circular design gives us an incredible opportunity to change that and build a thriving fashion industry where waste and pollution are eliminated, products and materials are circulated, and nature is regenerated.”

Circular Design for Fashion contributors  

Adidas, ADIFF, Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd (ABFRL), Alvanon, Art Partner, ASOS, Atelier & Repairs, Bank & Vogue, Bethany Williams, Browns, Burberry, Bureau Betak, By Rotation, Candiani Denim, Circular Systems, Critical Textile Topologies, Duran Lantink, DressX, Eileen Fisher, Eon, FarFarm, Fast Retailing, Ferdinando Verderi, FFORA, Fibershed, Gabriela Hearst, Gap, Germanier, Good American, Gucci, H&M Group, Hallotex,  Hirdaramani, ICICLE, I:Collect, IDEO, Inditex-Oysho, Jaypore, Kering, klee klee, La Bouche Rouge, Lacoste, Maggie Marilyn, MARINE SERRE, Month Day Year, Nkwo Onwuka, Orange Culture, Patrick McDowell, Pepijn van Eeden, Phipps International, Point Off View by Marina Testino, Powered by People, Proclaim, Provenance, PVH Corp. / Tommy Hilfiger, QAALDESIGNS, Reclothing Bank, Redress, Renewcell, RSA, RÆBURN, SAMUEL GUÌ YANG, Sara Sozzani Maino, Sellalong, Shantanu & Nikhil, Stella McCartney, Style House Files – Lagos Fashion Week, Susannah Frankel, Taylor Stitch, Teemill, The African Rack, The Fabricant, The Renewal Workshop, The Restory, The Sustainable Angle | Future Fabrics Expo, ThredUP, Tillmann Lauterbach, Timberland, Unmade, Vestiaire Collective, VF Corp / Napapijri, Vivienne Westwood, WGSN, W.L. Gore & Associates, Wolfgang Blau, YCloset, Yehyehyeh, YKK.

© The Ellen MacArthur Foundation
© The Ellen MacArthur Foundation

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation is an international charity that develops and promotes the circular economy in order to tackle some of the biggest challenges of our time, such as climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution. The foundation works with its network of private and public sector decision-makers, as well as academia, to build capacity, explore collaborative opportunities, and design and develop circular economy initiatives and solutions. Increasingly based on renewable energy, a circular economy is driven by design to eliminate waste, circulate products and materials, and regenerate nature, to create resilience and prosperity for business, the environment, and society.

The Fashion Initiative

The Fashion Initiative was launched by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation as ‘Make Fashion Circular’  at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit 2017, and brings together leaders from across the fashion industry to work with cities, philanthropists, NGOs, and innovators. Fashion companies that are in the Foundation’s Network include: Strategic Partner – H&M Group, Partners – Inditex, Lacoste, Primark, PVH Corp., Ralph Lauren and Zalando, and members. The Foundation’s Fashion Initiative is leading international efforts to stop waste and pollution by creating a circular economy for the industry, where products are used more, are made to be made again and are made from safe, recycled or renewable inputs.

Buy the book

The book will be available to buy for £34.99 on and from the Foundation’s website at 09:00 December 2nd, 2021:

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