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Drapers Sustainable Fashion 2020: 'Tech essential for sustainable goals'

“Technology is going to be the key to providing a sustainable future that works pragmatically,” David Shah, CEO of textile magazine group View Publications, told delegates at Drapers Sustainable Fashion 2020 in London this morning.

Shah chaired a power talk panel discussion with leaders in the sustainable fashion technology space (pictured, from left): Keith O’Brien, marketing and business development manager at sustainable denim manufacturer Isko Denim, Victoria Soto, custom technology consultant at sustainable textile company Jeanologia, and Filippo Ricci, program and partnership manager at Fashion Revolution’s curated showcasing initiative Fashion Open Studio.

Isko is a textile manufacturer and distributor of denim, using patented technologies. Some of its denim technologies include Isko Blue Skin, Isko Pop and Isko Future Face.

“Investing in technology and research is something we’re hugely passionate about,” said Isko’s O’Brien. “We’re constantly trying to innovate  textile processes and trying to reimagine them to make them more efficient.”

Meanwhile, Jeanologia creates sustainable and efficient finishing technologies for textile, coding, packaging, and other industrial applications.

Soto said: “We are developing technologies helping to clean mostly jeans, and other garments, before selling to customers.”

Fashion Open Studio is Fashion Revolution’s showcasing initiative, which launched in 2017. The week-long event includes presentations, talks, openings and workshops that shine a light on emerging designers, established trailblazers and key players. The initiative celebrates the people and processes behind fashion and accessories collections, and promotes industry transparency and longevity.

Ricci spoke to delegates about circulatory and how businesses need to be careful about what it means in the fashion industry: “Circulatory at this stage is very much in the making. Even denim and cotton have a limit. The idea of a circular economy [is good, but] we believe it is a bit of an overstatement.

“Do you really want to bring back polyester into the market? It’s destructive. Do you want to put back a product we should avoid at all costs? We need to be careful as to what circulatory means.”

He added: “So far, no fabric has demonstrated to be ready for full circulatory full polyester. There is now technology that allows up to 90% of recycled cotton used to recycle.”


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