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FIVE GAME CHANGING FASHION ENTREPRENEURS SHORTLISTED FOR INDIA’S LARGEST SUSTAINABLE FASHION AWARD

~ ‘Circular Design Challenge’ is a collaborative initiative of RIL’s R | Elan ‘Fashion For Earth’, United Nations Environment Programme and Lakmé Fashion Week ~

~Winner to be announced on Sustainable Fashion Day at Lakmé Fashion Week on 13th February~

After the successful launchof India’s firstsustainable fashion award atLakmé Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2019,the premier fashion platform is set to return with the second edition of the ‘Circular Design Challenge’ – a collaboration of Reliance Industries Ltd.’s (RIL) R | Elan ‘Fashion for Earth’ initiative, Lakmé Fashion Week (LFW) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in India.

The platform announces a shortlist of five designentrepreneurs whowere chosen based on innovative collections using materials from diverse sources of waste including plastics. The aim of this initiative is to bring to the forefront environmental champions of tomorrow in the Indian fashion and textiles industry.

While commenting on the second edition of Circular Design Challenge Mr Vipul Shah, COO – Petrochemicals Business, RIL said “We are pleased to see the unprecedented consciousness for creating sustainable, scalable, circularity concept based, creative apparel andaccessoryofferings throughout the entire textile value chain. We are eager to see innovations, new designs and concepts that will be presented by the shortlisted finalists.”

The chosen applicants will be mentored across personality, pitch and presentation development. There will be a final round where an esteemed panel will choose the winner on 13th February 2020, which is celebrated as Sustainable Fashion Day at Lakmé Fashion Week Summer/Resort 2020.

The winner will be felicitated with a 20-lakh cash prize, presented by R Elan to build their sustainable fashion brand, and will also avail an exclusive opportunity to showcase at Lakmé Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2020.

Circular fashion is a concept aimed to reduce waste by increasing its lifespan through reusing and recycling the materials and creating new products out of them.The finalists– SKILLED SAMARITAN by Gauri  Gopa Agarwal, CANCELLED PLANS by Mallika Reddy, CHAMBRAY & CO by Esha Agarwal, MALAI by Zuzana Gombosova and Susmith Chempodil and OFF GRAIN by Varsha Rani Solanki were chosen after a rigorous selection process. The challenge saw over 85 registrations from over 40 cities across the country.

 Atul Bagai, United Nations Environment Country office, Indiasaid,“UNEP -India office is proudly associated with the Circular Design Challenge. We strongly believe that sustainable fashion is the way forward for the fashion industry as we face climate crises on a day -to-day basis. The Future of Sustainable Fashion will be Design Led. The Circular Design Challenge is a great initiative to have young upcoming designers incorporate sustainability in their designs thus creating a trend in itselfamongst the fashion fraternity. UNEP congratulates the shortlisted designers for coming out with such ingenious innovative ideas.”

 Jaspreet Chandok, Head – Lifestyle Businesses, IMG Reliance Limited said, “The winner of the first edition of Circular Design Challenge experienced immense growth through this platform both in terms of exposure and business opportunities. CDC shall continue to change the lives of innovators and entrepreneurs who are working towards making circularity & sustainability the new normal.”

The designers were required to incorporate circular components across the textile value chain in their design through the application of circular-design principles and demonstrate a positive impact on the environment and on society. They were evaluated and scored on usage of waste in their collection, fashion & aesthetic quotient, business viability/scalability, value chain and collaborations.

From aluminium to bio-composite to Chambray, the shortlisted designers used a wide variety of materials as their fabric base to create quirky accessories and clothing. An array of techniques from croquet to charpoy weaving to fermenting bacterial cellulose were applied to upcycle and give new life to the waste in a sustainable and eco-friendly way.

Circular Design Finalists

Information on the designer and the collection:

Name: Mallika Reddy

Label: Cancelled Plans

Age:27 years

City:Hyderabad

BSc. Architecture with minors in Cinematic Arts and Entrepreneurship at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles.Currently pursuing an MBA at Central Saint Martins, University of Arts, London.

The circularity elements in her collection include materials that are truly unconventional in the fashion industry, such as waste generated in industrial processes such as packaging, trims and offcuts while also working with rejects and creating new textiles and embellishments from materials that typically end up in landfill or the oceans.

Quote on Circularity and Sustainability:
“In order to promote circularity, there are number of little interventions we can do throughout the chain of production. We can use predictive data and artificial intelligence to inform our production cycles rather than by driven by volumes. We can repurpose waste to create new and radically different materials that can have an application beyond the textile and apparel industry.”

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