Materials science and innovation, sometimes overlooked in the fashion industry, is an important conversation to be had. Our MBA Fashion Technology students had the opportunity to do just that with Christine Goulay, an expert in sustainable innovation and fabrics.
Christine, previously having worked at Kering as Head of Sustainable Innovation, is now the Global Director for Pangaia B2B, a materials science company that is on a mission to save the planet by delivering fashion products made from tech and bio-engineered fabrics.
Together with Christine, over the course of their fabric innovation module, the students explored the future of fabrics and what it means for the fashion industry. By taking a ‘walk’ through the fashion value chain, students dissected the processes and steps required to create innovative fabrics from start to finish. More importantly, a conversation around the ‘end of life’ for fabrics was ignited to really reflect about sustainability and the long-term impact of fabrics on the environment. Each week, a new theme was explored, along with guest speakers who spoke to the students, including our own Foundry Powered by IFA Paris startup, RoundRack.
Materials explored included biofabrics such as those made from algae, spider silk and oranges, which all use organic matter to create raw fibres to be spun into yarn and then fabrics. Other issues explored included alternative materials, such as plant-based leathers made from cactus, pineapples or apples, and vegan alternatives to goose feathers made from flowers. This module opened up the world of new materials to the students, which is essential for the future of fashion and for these new graduates that will lead the change.