H&M x UAL, Exploring the Concept of Circularity

As alumni of UAL, it was only natural that I found myself drawn to LCF’s collaboration with H&M. The high street label has become well known for partnering up with various fashion labels, so why not a fashion school.

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The collection on display at H&M Oxford Street branch

Working together with LCF students, the project was all about sustainability within the fashion industry. Exploring the concept of circularity, the objective was to work with students studying BA (Hons) Fashion Design & Technology Womenswear and BA (Hons) Fashion Jewellery. Thirty-three students were challenged to design a capsule Womenswear collection using garments and materials provided through H&M’s in-store garment collecting scheme.

The collection on display at H&M Oxford Street branch
The collection on display at H&M Oxford Street branch

On completion, 8 winning collections were selected to be on display in select H&M stores in London. The winners were selected by judges who included, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Fashion at LCF Dilys Williams, designer & campaigner Orsola de Castro, Course Leader, London College of Fashion Shee Fun Chan and H&M UK & IE Sustainability Manager Catarina Midby.

The collection on display at H&M Oxford Street branch
The collection on display at H&M Oxford Street branch

On the collab, Catarina Midby, shared; “As leaders in sustainability, it is hugely important for us to continue working to promote the importance of garment recycling to our customers. Garment recycling is the first step towards achieving our goal of 100% circularity”. Renee Cuoco from the Centre for Sustainable Fashion added; “It has been exciting to explore sustainability with LCF students at the beginning of their journey. In response to a challenging design brief, they have shown us new possibilities for fashion and this is what the industry now needs from our future graduates”.

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The collection was on display for 4 days during LFW. I managed to make it to the Oxford street branch, on the 4th floor, to take a look. The garments were striking and beautifully made and the Jewellery on display was quite quirky. After taking it all in, it was great to see a high street chain like H&M working with students and taking their interest in sustainability that little bit further. I am sure I am not alone in firmly believing that the students of today are going to be the designers of tomorrow. So therefore they should be involved in deciding where the future of fashion is headed. After all, they explore the industry differently than those who have been in it for a long time. Therefore, it is important that all our attention is given to areas such as sustainability so we can highlight and find solutions and the H&M x UAL type of partnership is certainly one way of doing so.

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