At the beginning of July, Team Wildling was at the Fashion Sustain in Berlin, which took place parallel to Fashion Week. As the name suggests, Fashion Sustain is all about sustainability in the fashion industry. But also questions like: What is the future of fashion, what influence do technologies and digitization have on what we wear and how are garments produced, occupied the organizers and participants.
We sat in various lectures and workshops and got an impression of what the future of sustainable textiles could look like. And behind the scenes, we are already eagerly considering what we are going to implement. Here are some excerpts from what we have seen and heard:
Cotton, linen, and hemp are still the classic materials for sustainable clothing. Depending on the workmanship and weave, these can be used for light summer fabrics or more robust textiles such as moleskin, which can be used for workwear.
But other natural materials can also be processed into fabrics. We saw shoes with wood fibers or mushrooms and rubber boots with corn. Soles can be made from walnuts and algae or tea are experimented with. One could believe that there are no limits to creativity! For example, we have had good experiences with Tencel (made from eucalyptus) and hemp. We are the first to make a shoe out of Washi (70% paper). The Tanuki has thus set standards for further innovations. And also our wolf, which consists mainly of a virgin wool whale, does not yet have many pack members outside of Wildling Shoes.
We are still eager to see what really proves to be sustainable and suitable for everyday use in practice!
Have your own feet digitally measured and then create your own unique dream shoe from the 3D printer? Theoretically, this is possible thanks to technological processes. In practice, the processes are still very expensive and can be implemented with few materials. Everyone should have perfectly fitting clothing (and shoes), especially since classic clothing sizes are usually only standardized to certain standard shapes, although feet and body shapes are so different! Who knows better than we do?
In addition to the product itself, the digitization also concerns the selection of the wardrobe: Which wildlings match your dress, which matches the three-quarter trousers? Here, too, there is now software that knows your wardrobe, shoe cabinet, and sizes and selects a wardrobe for you. Or you ask the community if you like it more humane. But whether individuality is not lost there? After all, tastes are different and that’s what makes life so colorful.
Education and sustainability
Where exactly do my clothes come from? Where does the cotton come from, what is the glue on the sole of the shoe made of and how many people are busy with my blouse before it hangs in my closet? It is not only here at Wildling that we repeatedly receive questions about the origin of materials and substances, about questionable ingredients or production.
We are very happy that we can always answer the questions with a clear conscience. However, if you want to find out for yourself which manufacturers have their products produced, there is some information: Websites and companies such as WikiRate, Circular Fashion or Sustainabill offer the opportunity to search for manufacturers and companies and to look at them in terms of sustainability and social responsibility. This makes products and supply chains more transparent and consumers can make better decisions themselves.
We have returned from the event with many ideas and great motivation. Fashion Sustain has shown that sustainability is no longer a niche theme in the fashion industry.
It is up to us, as producers and consumers, to bring about change and it looks like we are heading in the right direction. Even if it will be a while before sustainability prevails in the textile industry, we find the future promising!