Q: Why #clothingtheloop?
We love puns. We also love sustainability. 'Closing the loop' means creating systems to recirculate materials after use. It's different from recycling (that is just a good excuse for making more stuff, and requires lots of energy!). #Clothingtheloop can look different for many brands, but in the end, it's all about seeing the end of life product as a resources from the start. This is the start of a conversation about redesigning the fashion system.
Q: Why was so much clothing abandoned?
The factory was producing knitwear for many fast fashion brands, but closed unexpectedly mid production almost a decade ago. None of the clothing was completed, and left in scraps. For a long time, nothing was done with the clothing, and the fabric began to degrade, emitting toxins. The truth is, many factories around the world house a lot of waste. Even after the clothing is put on the store shelves, the clothing is sometimes abandoned if it's not sold. Waste in fashion is a systemic problem, and we desperately need to move towards a more circular economy!
Q: What happened to all the clothing in the photos?
The clothing structures still live in the Factory in Cambodia for the time being! We purchased a portion of the fabric that was salvageable to hopefully give a new life to them in as many ways as possible. Our story is open ended, so stay tuned on the future of the clothes!
Q: How much fabric was used to create the installations?
Approximately 25,000kg. That's total amount of clothing an average American will use over their lifetime.
Q: Why not just donate the clothes?
When the factory closed, it was mid-production. That means all the fabric that was left in the factory was completely unfinished. Unfortunately, none of the fabric was wearable, with over 8 years of moisture and rats living in the clothing, the scraps were in pretty terrible shape. We're still looking into ways we can properly recycle or dispose of the fabric. As of yet, there is no technology to recycle mixed fabric like the ones found in this factory.
Q: Can anyone go to this factory in cambodia?
Yes. The old garment factory has now been entirely renovated into the coolest art and co-working space!
Find out more about them here.
Q: What can I do to reduce waste in fashion?
If you wear clothes, you can help change the way fashion is being designed and produced! It's important to vote with your dollar, and support brands who are #clothingtheloop. But wether you're wearing a sustainable brand or not, reducing waste in fashion has a lot to do with how we wear our clothes. Learn to extend the life of the things you wear, swapping wardrobes with friends before buying new, and falling back in love with the old shirt at the back of your closet. We all have a part to play in #clothingtheloop on fashion.
Learn more about the Fashion Revolution here.
Q: What's next?
Have an idea? Get in touch.
We have big plans to continue challenging the status quo of the fashion industry, in Cambodia and beyond!