For the previous decade, trend’s main figures have gathered on the Copenhagen Fashion Summit yearly to debate how the business can obtain a extra sustainable future. This yr’s occasion although—which will probably be going down just about for the primary time, from 12 to 13 October—is arguably crucial up to now, with time shortly working out to deal with the local weather disaster.
“We now have an opportunity now to make use of this second to really reset,” Eva Kruse, CEO of the International Trend Agenda and founding father of the Copenhagen Trend Summit, tells Vogue. “It’s ever extra related to debate precisely how sustainability could be a enormous a part of the rebuilding of the style business after [the Covid-19] disaster.”
Eva Kruse, President and CEO, International Trend Agenda talks on the Copenhagen Trend Summit 2019.
© Images Getty Photos
The transfer to digital
Happening through the brand new CFS+ platform, the digital occasion will characteristic a collection of conversations between the likes of H&M CEO Helena Helmersson and professor of environmental science Johan Rockström, in addition to Omoyemi Akerele, founding father of Lagos Trend Week, and Samata Pattinson, CEO of Purple Carpet Inexperienced Gown. Gucci CEO Marco Bizzarri will even be collaborating in a dwell interview, whereas different audio system will embrace Chanel president Bruno Pavlovsky, Ganni founder Nicolaj Reffstrup, and Amina Razvi, government director of the Sustainable Attire Coalition. All talks will stay on the location past the digital occasion, and there will probably be a digital matchmaking service for manufacturers and innovators to satisfy, too.
The brand new format displays the way in which by which business conferences are having to adapt throughout the pandemic, with the Circular Fashion Summit going down through VR know-how earlier this month. “This disruption with Covid has made us take into consideration how we convey these conversations to life another way, and create one thing that may have a for much longer life than simply someday,” Kruse says. “We will attain a a lot greater viewers [virtually]. I’m very excited that the CFS+ platform is open to everybody—there isn’t a costly ticket, and it does not require a flight.”
Together with various voices was a key focus, significantly in mild of the worldwide looking on racial injustice we’ve seen in 2020. This yr’s occasion has, nevertheless, faced criticism for not together with the voices of garment staff— contemplating how closely they’ve been impacted by cancelled orders throughout the pandemic—though Mostafiz Uddin, founder of producing firm Denim Professional Ltd in Bangladesh and an advocate for staff’ rights, is on the lineup.
“We haven’t been ok at prioritising [diversity] previously,” the Copenhagen Trend Summit CEO admits. “We’ve been extra centered on getting these in energy to talk and sadly, it’s nonetheless [the case] that there are usually not sufficient various voices in management positions.”
The worth of trend
It’s honest to say the previous few months have given most of us an opportunity to decelerate and mirror on what’s necessary to us—with early indications suggesting that customers have gotten more eco-conscious because of this. Fittingly, then, the theme of this yr’s digital summit is ‘redesigning worth’, highlighting why all of us must worth our garments extra. “How can we get again to a spot the place you recognize a factor has a value as a result of it has price one thing not just for the employee, and the material, however for the forest, the water and pesticides used, the CO2 emitted?” Kruse questions.
It’s a topic that was additionally addressed within the open letter to the fashion industry, led by Dries Van Noten, calling for delivered collections to coincide with the suitable season, and discounting to occur solely on the finish of the season (not mid-season, because it does now). It’s a proposal Kruse agrees with: “Huge reductions have decreased the worth of the product and made us as shoppers used to getting issues at a reduced charge. When every part is discounted, you additionally typically purchase an excessive amount of.”
On a private stage, the query of worth is central to the previous journal editor’s method to her personal wardrobe. “I’ve to worth merchandise that I purchase extra; I’ve to wish it extra,” she explains. “It’s about lowering, reusing and recycling. Once I purchase one thing new, I’ve to eliminate one thing as properly—both resell it, give it away or recycle it—so there is a movement in my wardrobe.”
The necessity for pressing motion
Whereas sustainability has been the speak of the style business of late, actual progress remains to be sluggish. “In all of our surveys, we are able to see about 50 per cent of the business is doing one thing within the area of sustainability, however nonetheless 50 per cent is lagging behind,” Kruse says. “The query is that if they’ll [take action] on their very own, or in the event that they must be pressured by laws, say, a value on water and on CO2, a ban on incineration.”
The International Trend Agenda CEO hopes the affect that Covid-19 has had on the style business will pace up the method. “The pandemic has shone a light-weight on sustainability as a enterprise crucial,” Kruse says. “We’ve seen how an organization that has a leaner provide chain, extra management over their pure sources and their manufacturing, are the manufacturers doing higher. Sustainability isn’t just the fitting factor to do by way of what’s proper for individuals and the planet, it’s additionally the fitting factor to create extra resilient enterprise fashions sooner or later.”
The Copenhagen Trend Summit has definitely come a good distance in transferring the dialog ahead over the previous decade—when it first launched in 2009, sustainability was not often talked about throughout the business. Does this make Kruse longing for the longer term? “I’m undoubtedly optimistic,” she concludes. “I actually hope that folks will take this chance to not simply return to what we had earlier than. It’s about being centered, and narrowing down what actually issues. I believe that may drive us to a superb place.”