The Circular Design Challenge is a platform for young fashion/accessory designers and entrepreneurs to showcase and win a prize for their innovative ideas and collections made by using materials from diverse waste sources including plastic. Launched in collaboration with Fashion for Earth by R|Elan™, UN Environment and Lakmè Fashion Week, it is one of India’s first and largest sustainable fashion challenges in the fashion, textiles and apparel industry.
The challenge is an initiative to promote thought leadership in sustainability by nurturing environmental champions of tomorrow in the fashion industry. We want to inspire innovation through circular design and offer solutions to reduce the environmental impact of the fashion, textiles and apparel industry.
In 2014, Anna Brismar, a global expert in circularity and sustainability coined the term ‘circular fashion’, and defined it later as “Clothes, shoes or accessories that are designed, sourced, produced and provided with the intention to be used and circulate responsibly (towards humans, living beings and the planet) and effectively in society for as long as possible, in their most valuable form, and hereafter return safely to the biosphere when no longer of human use.”
Circular fashion is a concept aimed to bring relief to the planet and the environment by reducing the waste that threatens to choke it today and increase the lifespan and reusability of the products created. The concept can be applied across the life cycle of a product - starting from the sourcing of fibre and yarn to its design, production, transportation, marketing, sale, all the way to its human use phase and the condition it exists in its life cycle post-use. Circular fashion is aimed at improving resource and energy efficiency in terms of design and production, reducing the waste generated throughout the life cycle and the environmental impact through the entire production process. Circular fashion ensures that the way the product is created leads to a closed loop system across the product's lifecycle. Rooted in the idea of a 'circular economy', circular fashion is pushing the industry from its current 'take-make-dispose' approach to one that creates positive and lasting impact environmentally, socially, and economically through a reuse – repurpose – reduce – recycle approach.