Sustainability Dominates the Discourse at Berlin Fashion Week

Berlin Fashion Week is unique in its ability to influence the discourse around sustainability. Unlike the “Big Four” – Paris, Milan, London and New York – Berlin’s fashion calendar is not limited to the schedules of luxury designers, who have, until recently, dominated the fashion landscape.

With the freedom to move away from a rigid timetable of catwalks and showcases, the German capital is once again hosting the 202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit and Fashion Revolution’s Fashion Open Studio during the upcoming Berlin Fashion Week (14th-20th March). 

202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit @ Berlin Fashion Week 

After two successful editions, experts from interdisciplinary fields will come together during Berlin Fashion Week for the 202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit to discuss and implement innovations and solutions for a more sustainable fashion industry. The focus of this edition is on regenerative fashion structures and questioning how positive impact can be implemented in already existing systems. The topic will be looked at from a global as well as a local perspective. The aim is to work out regenerative mechanisms for the planet, the economy and society and at the same time to strengthen and promote local fashion actors and innovators worldwide. 

Berlin Fashion Week

The 202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit with the theme “Regenerative Fashion Systems – Implement Positive Impact” will be digitally and physically hosted by studio MM04, in collaboration with Sqetch and the Beneficial Design Institute. 

“I am very pleased that formats like the 202030 Summit are taking place here in the capital during Berlin Fashion Week. This year’s content promises a constructive exchange between participants to provide an impetus for sustainable development within the textile and fashion industry. An event that puts the focus on important topics of today”  

– Stephan Schwarz, Senator for Economy, Energy and Enterprise  


202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit Programme: 

15/03/22 – on DAY #1 we will take the Global Perspective and ask our speakers and panellists: How might we create fashion that includes repair mechanisms for the planet, people, culture and the economy? 

16/03/22 – on DAY #2 we will take the Local Perspective and ask our speakers and panellists: How might we strengthen local fashion communities, businesses and innovators to strive for a regenerative future? 

17/03/22 – on DAY #3 we will look into Implementation Guidance and explore with our speakers and panellists: 

How might we create trust through holistic regenerative quality standards for product, design and production processes? 

Click here for the 202030 – The Berlin Fashion Summit registration. 

Berlin Fashion Week

Fashion Open Studio @ Berlin Fashion Week 

Fashion Revolution Germany is welcoming 15 designers to take part in the Fashion Open Studio showcase from 15th to 17th March as part of Berlin Fashion Week. Through a series of designer open studios, short films, exhibitions and talks, Fashion Open Studio is challenging how we think about our clothing, highlighting real solutions and creating a safe space in which to exchange valuable ideas and information.  

 “Fashion Open Studio Berlin is giving exclusive insights into the work of upcoming international and local designers who pursue a sustainable approach to fashion. 

In hybrid formats, we take the audience directly into the studios and open the dialogue between industry experts and consumers.” 

– Carina Bischof, CEO Fashion Revolution Germany e.V. 

Berlin Fashion Week

Emeka Suits, the eponymous label founded in 2019 by Sydney Nwakanma based between Berlin and rural Kenya, is amongst the brands selected for this year’s showcase. After documenting the critical amounts of clothing waste in Dandora, one of Africa’s biggest landfill sites, Nwakanma and his team embarked on creating clothing to challenge existing ideas that surround clothing landing in Africa as a product of western consumption. A far cry from the piles of clothing surrounding Nwakanma strewn on the wasteland, the suits luxuriousness highlight the very real potential of reimagining trash. The handwoven pieces move away from the DIY aesthetic that has seen a surge in recent years. Emeka suits are on a mission to bridge the gap between luxury and sustainability, with a richness emerging from a narrative, not a price tag.  

Alongside a selection of innovative Berlin-based brands, British designer Patrick McDowell has been invited to showcase his work as part of Fashion Open Studio showcase. At the beginning of his career the 23-year-old Liverpudlian, whilst doing a placement at Burberry noticed the vast quantities of material wasted in production, and wrote to Christopher Bailey (then the chief creative officer of Burberry) to see if he could make use of the excess of offcuts. His first collection, firefighting aunties, was an ode to recognising the parallels between the work of his father and the powerful women at the epicentre of his family. Since, McDowell has collaborated on collections with the likes of Burberry, Swarovski and Depop and recently became the sustainability design director for Italian brand PINKO. 

Fashion Open Studio Talk Programme: 

15/03/22 – @MBFW Kraftwerk Fashion Open Studio Berlin presents: Talk: FASHION – Repairs and Restoration (11am-12pm CEST) 

16/03/22 – @202030 Summit Fashion Open Studio Berlin presents: Talk: POWER – Who’s in control? (5pm-5:30pm) 

16/03/22 – @POOL Berlin Space Fashion Open Studio Berlin presents: Talk: MONEY – How do we value our clothes? (6pm-7pm)

Follow this link for the complete list of designers and event schedule. 

– By Eliza Edwards

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