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How Circularity Can Solve Fashion's Systemic Problems

In 2017, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation published a comprehensive report titled, "A New Textiles Economy - Redesigning Fashion's Future." Among many startling facts, it outlined that:

  • 97% of the clothing manufactured is made from virgin feedstock, including oil (63%), cotton (26%) and "other" (11%)

  • 12% is lost or wasted in the production process

  • 73% is landfilled or burned at the "end of it's life", and

  • less than 1% of all textiles are recycled into new textiles

As a fashion industry professional whose career has spanned retail, wholesale, product development, manufacturing, direct-to-consumer sales and higher education, I decided to dig into my own research to help define the path that Circular Fashion LA would take. Quite frankly the facts of the industry's current trajectory are dark and depressing. Here is just some of the info I compiled:

It became very clear, very quickly to me that post-consumer clothing and textiles are an overly-abundant and under-utilized resource to serve as feedstock to produce new products. And thus, a core pillar of our mission statement solidified - NO NEW TEXTILES. (We do source new trims and closures as needed.)

I invite you to download and read the report, "How Circularity Can Solve Fashion's Systemic Problems" to help you craft your own ethos and drive your decision-making as a consumer, business and/or brand.

Here's to a brighter future!

- Karri Ann Frerichs, CEO Circular Fashion LA


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