Denmark’s Nikolaj Sturm launches circular design collection at Zalando
The 13-piece collection titled ‘Synthesizer’ is inspired by fluorescent colors and the sounds of electro and techno beats, as well as the cracking sound of nylon. Nicolas made a conscious decision to help change the perception of synthetics by creating a collection using only recycled polyester and synthetic fibers including Lycra T400, an inherently elastic type of polyester fiber, Zalando said in a press release.
Online fashion and lifestyle platform Zalando has launched an exclusive capsule collection by Danish designer Nikolaj Storm. A report by global sustainability consultancy, Anthesis, accompanies the capsule collection, to provide more clarity on how the collection has adopted a circular design approach at each stage of the product’s life cycle.
“The use of synthetics fibers enables sustainability in manufactured garments, allowing for repeated recycling without reducing product quality. The fibers allow for darker colors and better retention, the garment does not lose its shape, which is one of the reasons it is used in sportswear,” says Storm.
Circular.The exclusive collection was designed by Nikolaj Sturm according to the circular design criteria of fashion, for which Zalando has been an active partner in development. Zalando adapted those standards to its existing sustainability standards and launched them in 2022 to enable designers to change their product design methods and set a clear framework for brands that want to sell and promote such products on Zalando’s platform.
Zalando commissioned independent sustainability consultancy Anthesis to assess the application of circular design criteria at each stage of the product life cycle and highlight opportunities for improvement.
The circular design criteria are built on three strategies, products are safe and made with recyclable and/or renewable inputs; Products are made to last, repaired and potentially also carry digital product passports, allowing a flow through circular business model; And products are made to be made again, so when they reach end-of-life they can be recycled or regenerated into new materials.
All items in the capsule collection follow at least the minimum level of criteria. Design changes have been considered to follow the criteria, such as wider seams for easy alterations, allowing Zipp to transition products from trousers to shorts across seasons, and care and repair QR codes on each style so consumers can understand how they can do it. Extend product life cycle.
The design and production of a circular collection is currently quite demanding in terms of the certification process that is essential to ensure the verification of the claims of all parties involved. Ultimately and because of these challenges, one of the original styles did not receive proper certification and was therefore removed from the collection.
However, to bring this special piece to life in a new and innovative way Zalando has partnered with The Dematerialised, a web3 ecommerce platform that closely collaborates with brands to create clothing that only exists in online spaces. To showcase the style that can’t be physically created, Dematerialized created a digital counterpart as an AR filter to be used on Snapchat and worn virtually.
“It’s been such an empowering journey for me as a designer—to be able to create something that tries to push the boundaries of art but stays true and honest to the process, highlighting how much it takes to make a product rounded. I’m excited to create a collection like this. Wanted that told the story and evolution of the process, it shows that we’re not quite there yet but we’re trying to be the absolute best version of ourselves that we can be in this current moment,” added Storm.
“With Nikolaj Sturm, we have found a fertile ground for cooperation. Based on his great knowledge and design skills, we have raised the bar by challenging him and raising his expertise on circular design. Nikolaj has demonstrated skill, open-mindedness, curiosity and the flexibility to explore circular design despite the multiple obstacles and ambiguities that inevitably come with unexplored and innovative spaces. We are grateful for this collaboration, and are excited to showcase his powerful designs along with the insights and learnings from the roadblocks we faced and how we tackled them together.” Laura Koppen, Head of Circularity at Zalando.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (NB)
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