Fashion is always about change, always about something new. It’s light. It’s seductive. It’s luxurious. Isn’t this what we hear on TV and read in Fashion magazines? I was even talking to a master student in fashion the other day when she called fashion ‘light’. There is nothing ‘light’ about fashion, was my respond. It brings a lot of pollution, pain and insecurities; and yes all this is packed in a beautiful wrapping.
Fashion, when we go all the way to the core of it, is certainly amazing. It is all about creativity, about helping people to communicate something about themselves through what they wear. It is about diversity and joy. It took me 4 years to reach this core of fashion. Well maybe longer, maybe it took me 22 years if we start counting from the moment that I learned to knit and started experimenting with it. Past 4 years I have spent on developing a new design system and a new business model for fashion brands and retailers. The design system exists of 5 steps and helps to design clothes that fulfill people’s needs. It also helps to build a relationship with the future customers based on trust and commitment. The business model offers 5 prices per clothing depending on the way it is going to be purchased (buy new – borrow new – buy worn – borrow worn – subscription). It helps to make fair trade production and low priced clothing possible.
Both models combined will lead to a revolution in fashion when many fashion brands and retailers start using it.
- Clothing of great quality would be affordable for everyone.
- Clothing production would empower many women working in this sector by paying them living wages and offering other benefits to them and their families.
- It would lead to a cleaner and healthier environment, because less water, energy and chemicals would be needed.
- It would lead to fashion companies improving each collections as they go.
- The problem of overproduction and unsold clothes would be solved.
- The problem of bad fitting and bad quality clothes would be solved.
- The problem of child labor and horrible working conditions would be solved.
Last Tuesday I received the title of Radical Innovator of the Future with this project. It really was a huge honor to be standing between great innovators in Amsterdam and being appreciated for my vision and the steps that I already have taken.
Does it work?
Together with my partner Samy Andary in the project Patch I have tested the design system on a small scale and I am proud to say that it works! We have been using the design system to create the ideal sweatpants and we have built a community of more that 200 sweatpants-lovers who have contributed to the final design until now. In total this was a process of 3 months. Our first batch of sweatpants was sold out within 2 hours (!) and we kept receiving emails from people asking us where and when they could buy the next batch because they love the concept and the designed pants.
For now I am writing my book ‘Paradigm shift in Fashion’ for fashion brands and retailers who would like to use this model within their company. The book will be published in autumn this year. If you would like to know more about these models, you can ask your question below or you could contact me directly by sending me an email.