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ASOS to deliver circular design training to designers

Sep '19
ASOS has pledged to deliver circular design training to its designers as part of its 2020 Circular Fashion System Commitment targets. To make it possible ASOS in partnership with the Centre for Sustainable Fashion (CSF) at London College of Fashion, has created a bespoke course to engage its designers in pioneering circular design techniques and best practices.

The aim of the bespoke course is to design products that take their entire lifecycle into account, said ASOS in a press release.

Circulating garments back into the system is difficult if circularity is not an integral part of the initial design process, which means empowering designers to incorporate circularity early on is crucial. In June 2018 the circular design training programme kicked off with a pilot project that ushered 15 members of the ASOS design team through half-day workshops, discussions and drop-in sessions. They explored concepts, case studies and practical circular design applications with researchers and designers from the CFS team.

ASOS Retail Academy now offers the programme on an ongoing basis. To date 93 per cent of ASOS' design team (116 people) have attended the Circular Design 1 course and 49 per cent (60 people) the Circular Design 2 course, with numbers growing monthly.

After quickly realising that all retail teams and functions (buying, merchandising, pattern cutting, garment tech) need to be involved, ASOS recently hired a dedicated team member to oversee the development of the training programme. Every team member needs to know specifically how circular design affects them and how it can be used in the roles they play. Identifying champions of circularity throughout the business and harnessing their support for scaling the programme has been an essential part of the process.

Alongside these champions and the ASOS retail teams, senior stakeholder buy-in was vital in getting the project off the ground. Moreover ASOS ensured that its suppliers were involved by integrating them into the journey. (PC)

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