BY KATIE - MYGREENPOD, 20 Oct '14

NEW DESIGN AWARD TO TARGET ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF CLOTHES

The search is on for fashion or textile designers who can show their flair for sustainable fashion.

The brand new SCAP Extending the Life of Clothes Design Awards (SCAP ELC Awards) is looking for designers to develop innovative solutions to clothes that are wearable for longer. In return, the winner will receive £5,000 and the opportunity to progress their work and develop it for a commercial market.

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WRAP, the organisation behind the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP) and Love Your Clothes, launched the SCAP ELC Awards with support from Defra, British Fashion Council, The Knowledge Transfer Network, InnovateUK and ModeConnect.

Targeting the lifetime of clothes

WRAP research shows that if the active life of clothes were extended by just nine months, it could reduce the carbon, water and waste footprints by 20-30% each, and save around £5 billion worth of the resources used to supply, launder and dispose of clothing.

The organisation believes that the use of innovative design to target the wearable lifetime of clothes offers the biggest opportunity to tackle the environmental impacts of clothes.

The SCAP ELC Awards will challenge designers to address the key reasons for garment failure, and therefore to items being thrown away. The concepts not only need to achieve solutions to longer life times, but also deliver ideas that are fashionable and saleable.

‘This is a great opportunity for designers to bring this issue to life. By applying their creativity and innovation to either sourcing or developing low impact, high quality fibres, and engineering garments that will last longer, they can instigate real change.

‘We need the sector to embrace this new approach to designing clothes.’

Marcus Gover, WRAP Director and ELC Awards judge

Resources Management Minister Dan Rogerson said, ‘I’m delighted to support the launch of this award which celebrates the vital role designers have to play in developing and promoting sustainable fashion. Their innovations can bring us closer to a more circular economy which will benefit both businesses and the environment.’

How to enter

The SCAP ELC Awards will be open to final year fashion and textile design undergraduates, MA students and professional fashion and textile designers from industry that live, work or study in England. Fashion designers can enter individually or collaborate with a textile designer to present their concepts.

All submissions will be assessed by a panel of judges made up of industry professionals and academics who collectively hold a range of knowledge and expertise in the sector.

All interested applicants must register by 12 November 2014, and only registered applicants can submit their ideas. The closing date for submissions is midnight on 19 January 2015. Three finalists will be chosen and interviewed by the judging panel in February 2015 and the winner announced shortly after.

For details on how to register and to view the full awards brief and supporting information, visit www.wrap.org.uk. For any applicant enquiries please email SCAP-ELC-awards@wrap.org.uk.