GreenStitched sits down with the finalists of Redress Design Award 2017 (earlier EcoChic Design Award). Redress Design Award is a sustainable fashion design competition organised by Redress, inspiring emerging fashion designers and students to create mainstream clothing with minimal textile waste.
The interviews with these young designers will be posted every Thursday on GreenStitched.
Today we meet Sung, finalist of the Redress Design Award 2017.
What brought you into the world of fashion? That ‘aha’ moment which opened doors to sustainable fashion?
Sung: It comes from my upbringing and family culture that making the best use of everything is a matter of course and was simply about frugality. Through giving second lives to goods (and this is not limited to clothes), I discover the joy of being content. In other words, sustainable fashion and design is a living attitude for me.
What was your inspiration for the Redress Design Award collection?
Sung: I was inspired to juxtapose discarded mass-produced, fast fashion items with the age-old technique of weaving to symbolise a spirit of awakening in a time of anxiety. I applied the design techniques of up-cycling and reconstruction to damaged industry textiles and secondhand clothing waste.
3 things you learnt from of the challenge?
Sung: 1) It is good to be encouraged to discover the potential of waste; I learned to take every resource seriously.
2) Through my participation in the Redress Design Award I’ve found out more about how many resources it is possible to save by slightly altering our design process. This was highlighted on a large scale through a visit we took to the TAL manufacturing facility in China.
3) I also learned that communication is a vital element to change. By knowing more specifically about what our consumers need, we can avoid much waste.
How do you think sustainable fashion can move from a niche to the mainstream?
Sung: In my point of view, raising the public’s awareness of environmental issues can be the best starting point. Consumers should be better educated with how and why they should change their fashion attitude into a more sustainable way of consumption, and I believe it’s our duty as designers to do this.
What is the biggest misconception about sustainable fashion?
Sung: It might be thought as something uses only natural materials, thus a little boring.
What is your advice for the next breed of fashion designers?
Sung: Design should always be motivated by making the world better and making our lives easier.
Where do you go from here? What is next in store for you?
Sung: I am planning to further my studies.
You can follow Sung’s work on Instagram
The 30 Redress Design Award 2018 semi-finalists will be announced on 17 April at www.redressdesignaward.com when Redress will also open up public judging for the People’s Choice Award.
Find a screening of the Frontline Fashion documentary in India here.