By guest writer TEXTILE ARTIST MISHA WATERTON
Future Fabrics Expo showcases commercially viable fabrics sourced from suppliers using sustainable principles, who are committed to reducing the environmental impact of the current textile supply chain.
By guest writer TEXTILE ARTIST MISHA WATERTON
An increase in ethical engagement within consumer behaviour has led to more and more businesses choosing to cater for a growing eco market. Many clients are seeking out eco-printing to ensure their products are as sustainable as possible and this niche market may be set to grow.
There are many elements to consider when working towards a sustainable production system for any design area. For the screen-printing process, there are several companies working to ensure their businesses offer great value, service and products, whilst also limiting their impact on the planet. I Dress Myself, based in Frome, is one leading example of how an eco screen printing business can be run.
All in all 18,265 visitors went along to New Designers 2013, making this year’s shows the busiest in its 28 year history. Having recently featured New Designer Week 1 we now turn our attentions to New Designers Week 2 for more wonderfully talented, newly qualified sustainable designers. The Week 2 show featured:
- Furniture & Product Design
- Graphic Design & Illustration
- Spatial Design (inc. Architecture & Interior Design)
- Motion Arts
- One Year On
The Houses of Parliament was a fitting venue for the launch of a new report called Short Circuit, which looks at the current lifecycle of our electronic gadgets and the true cost to the earth. It was released by The Gaia Foundation and allies; African Biodiversity Network; London Mining Network; Mining Watch Canada; OCMAL; Oilwatch Africa PIPLinks & Climate Revolution; and was supported by the EC.
Katarina Dimitrijevic, a graduate of Goldsmiths College London, is exploring recycling and up-cycling design strategies to promote design activism around waste. Through her company, KraalD, she’s striving to initiate debate by engaging people in ‘trash-aesthetics’, through design, craft making and workshops.
Her point is that, no matter what we do or don’t do, we are all co-creating our future together. We want more, but, considering sustainability, we must consume less. Put simply, Katarina thinks we should reconsider the things we throw away. For instance, discarded plastic doesn’t degrade; instead, besides killing wildlife, it becomes smaller and smaller, and eventually microscopic, when it can enter the food chain.
Grand Designs Live returned again this May to London’s ExCeL Centre, hosted by TV’s Kevin McCloud himself. It’s the perfect show for those seeking inspiration and expert advice for everything from home redecoration, to renovations, or even full scale self-build projects.
Each year, eco champion Kevin’s annual ‘Green Heroes’ exhibition celebrates the latest and best in sustainable design and innovations. “I keep a list in my phone or a note of who I meet and what I see, and we put it together as an exhibit. It is a great thing to see materialise” says McCloud “and is entirely focused on brilliant people who aren’t yet in the public eye, but who really deserve to be.” The exhibit is designed not only to inspire people, but also celebrates Grand Designs Live’s wider message of sustainable living.
Here are some of the designs that caught our eye:
The much-anticipated Designs of the Year 2013 exhibition is open, showcasing the most innovative and imaginative designs from around the world. The Design Museum invited a selection of trusted friends and colleagues to nominate their favourite projects from the past 12 months. These are practicing architects and designers, academics and design tutors, journalists and writers, plus curators from other museums and institutions.
Designs of the Year creates a platform and an opportunity for young designers to be recognised and displayed alongside established design names. Previous winners such as the Folding Plug and the Plumen light bulb have seen prototypes and original ideas become mass manufactured consumer goods sold throughout the world.
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall left the comfort of River Cottage behind and went on a journey to find out what was really going on at the industrial end of our fisheries. What he found was that things are not just bad… they’re mad. Hugh’s Fish Fight, in association with Channel 4, set sail in January 2011 to campaign against the waste of fish caused by the insane Discards Policy. Half the fish caught in the North Sea are being thrown back into the sea, dead, because of crazy EU laws.
Hugh’s “Discards Campaign” condemns the throwing away of perfectly edible fish to avoid breaching limits. The response from the UK public was incredible. Over 850,000 people have now signed the Fish Fight petition, and so many people emailed their MPs to protest about discards that they forced a debate in the Houses of Parliament.