Leading brand consultancy, Designers Consociate, is set to launch ROUNDABOUT — an innovative digital platform and resource kit that aims to promote sustainability and the circular economy within the African fashion industry.
The launch, scheduled for June 27, 2023, will mark a significant milestone in driving awareness, education, and transformative change towards sustainable design, production, practices, and consumption.
According to the brand’s statement:
ROUNDABOUT’s vision is to build an ecosystem and powerful knowledge base that will inspire new solutions by highlighting what’s happening in Africa, facilitate access to highly relevant information, expertise, and tools, create opportunities for collaboration and partnership, and support transparency and access to materials. ROUNDABOUT seeks to significantly impact the industry’s future, the continent’s prosperity, the global climate, and the well-being of communities.
The digital platform will serve as a space for learning, providing designers and industry professionals access to tools and resources that promote sustainable practices. Through virtual masterclasses, interactive workshops, visual storybooks of process, conversations and expert panels, ROUNDABOUT aims to empower designers, makers, and creatives with knowledge and insights to create consciously while navigating the complexities of sustainability.
Key focus areas for ROUNDABOUT include circular economy, sustainable craftsmanship, textile innovation, and responsible consumption. By designing a closed-loop system, reducing waste, promoting ethical manufacturing, and creating emotionally durable products, ROUNDABOUT aims to redefine the industry’s approach to fashion production and consumption.
The platform will feature participating brands that are actively exploring circularity and sustainability, such as NKWO, UMOJA, DYE LAB, THIS IS US, PEJU OBASA, as well as industry experts like Sabinna Ramichova (Sabinna), Jennifer Thompson (Colourizd), Holly McQuillan (3D ZeroWaste Textile Systems), Studio Hilo, Rethread Africa, Yegwa Ukpo (New Type), Bubu Ogisi (IAMIsigo), Eve Nnaji (ADD, apt), and more are leading the way with innovative design approaches and practices that prioritize recycling, waste reduction, and the use of regenerative and traceable materials.
As part of the launch day event, ROUNDABOUT will host 3 digital events; An Instagram Live hosted by BellaNaija Style with Roundabout Founder, Zara Odu & designer Peju Obasa, where they will delve into topics around sustainable fashion, circularity, product design, and upcycling.
Following this, there will also be a live Zoom event featuring Sabinna Rachimova, a forward-thinking designer, consultant, lecturer, and public speaker, as she shares a presentation on the topic “Fashion Sustainability in Practice”. Finally, the launch will close with Zara Odu hosting a panel discussion between an artist, designer, and educator – Sasha Duerr, Oroma Itegboje from This Is Us, and Tinyiko Makawawa, on the topic How to scale Natural & Plant-based dyeing for Fashion design.