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H&M’s latest collection embodies sustainable glam

Made using a plethora of recycled and recyclable materials, Innovation Circular Design Story celebrates two themes: eco-friendliness and joy.

Given that the majority of us spent the 2020 Christmas period indoors, it’s likely you’re looking forward to celebrating without lockdown restrictions this time around.

If you’re gearing up to ditch last year’s sweatpants in favour of full glam for your annual office party – or even just a meander along the stalls of your local market in search of some glühwein – try to bear in mind the environmental cost of festive clothing.

Of course, it’s no surprise that our general attitude of excess and indulgence during December has a detrimental impact on the planet.

But as eco-friendly as choosing to wrap gifts in the same paper you’ve been carefully storing away for re-use since 2015 or buy from the retailers that have removed glitter and pointless packaging from their seasonal ranges may be, the short shelf life of Christmas fashion presents another issue entirely.

In our pursuit to look good throughout the wintry months we often forget the not-so-merry truth behind those novelty outfits, sequin gowns, and knitted jumpers we love so much: that they’re almost always destined to be thrown away or pushed to the back of our wardrobes the moment we start making our New Year’s Resolutions.

H&M's Innovation Circular Design Story Collection - Tom + Lorenzo

So, as we continue striving to avoid that 1.5°C mark, how can we ensure our style choices this Christmas don’t play into the disposable culture we’ve become so used to?

Well, if you’re absolutely unable to go thrift shopping and the lure of that extravagant red and green jacket proves too hard to resist, try supporting brands committed to a more circular form of production.

Take H&M, for example. Formerly the emblem of fast fashion, it has surprisingly made some real progress as of late towards developing future sustainable solutions.

Most recently, it dropped a new capsule collection that seeks to reframe the sustainability discussion by proving that fighting for positive change doesn’t necessarily require us to forfeit joy.

Launching mid-December, The Innovation Circular Design Story is a 45-piece line for those who enjoy experimenting and expressing themselves without the hefty carbon footprint that sits alongside.

H&M Celebrates Sustainability & Joy with Innovation Circular Design Story

‘People have preconceived notions about what circularity is,’ says H&M’s creative advisor Ann-Sofie Johansson. ‘We wanted to demonstrate that it is possible to design a bright, fashion-focused collection with circularity in mind.’

With a focus on forward-thinking design and innovative materials, everything is made using a plethora of cutting-edge recycled and recyclable fabrics so we can dress glamorously while refraining from contributing to the pending ecological disaster.

These include Repreve Our Oceans, a fibre sourced from bottles collected on shorelines and coasts, Resortecs, a dissolvable sewing thread, Vegea, a vegan material made from grape skins, stalks and seeds discarded by wineries, and Cycora by Ambercycle, which is made from used garments and end of life textile waste.

Achieved using a tool known as the Circulator, which allows the H&M team to consider the stages of its garment creation process and assess expected lifetime, the hope going forward is that all the retailer’s products will be designed this way by 2025.

‘The collection is a celebration of fashion, fun and joy, showcasing the potential of sustainable processes and fabrics,’ explains Abigail Kammerzell, H&M’s Sustainability Manager.

H&M-Innovation-Circular-Design-Story-Collection-Style-Fashion-Tom-Lorenzo-Site (18) - Tom + Lorenzo

‘By offering great design we’re able to educate our shoppers and talk to the people who are interested in the sustainability practices that are behind the pieces.’

‘It brings to life, in a visceral way, the possibilities of the circular clothing economy. That’s why the goal was to create something that demonstrated, without a doubt, that sustainability can be beautiful.’

Yes, it might sound like yet another bout of lip service – fashion simply jumping on more trends while they’re hot and perpetuating the greenwashing problem we’d all like to leave in 2021 – but H&M stresses that this isn’t an isolated moment.

Circular Design Story is in fact the fourth collection of its kind this year, part of H&M’s dedication to an industry that promotes longevity over the outdated take, make, waste approach it’s been comfortably adhering to for decades.

On that note, if you want some guilt-free showstoppers for the holidays, H&M has you covered.

 

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