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Service Shirt: a 50-year fashion statement, Mistra

2015 – 2020
Imagine if our clothes lasted as long as the materials they were made from?

The Service Shirt concept explores the multiple complexities, contingencies, challenges and opportunities associated with design for circular business models in extended use contexts. The Service Shirt was designed as a 'deliberate extreme' to have a total lifecycle of 50 years.

This lifecycle includes inhouse and external remanufacture processes, and various sharing cycles - often moving between single ownership and rental contexts. It becomes the lining for a jacket and then crafted into fashion accessories; before finally being regenerated in the year 2068.

The shirt was created with the intention of exploring how designing for this context differs from linear design; to design using lifecycle assessment to guide decision-making and to stimulate discussion around issues that emerge when companies attempt to make circular business models operable in the fashion industry.

In the end we went further than this - we asked, 'who are the people and what are the places?' that will make extended-life, circular fashion a reality? The insights we gained also enabled us to see the potential beyond the brand context - to garments that could flow between users, maker spaces and entrepreneurial ventures and charities.

The Service Shirt suggests new forms of more social and local fashion production, use and reinvention.

Research Team:

The Service Shirt exhibit is the work of Professor Becky Earley, Co-Director of Centre for Circular Design (CCD), in collaboration with CCD PhD Researcher Laetitia Forst and designer-maker Katherine Wardropper. Llfecycle Insights came from Sweden-based experts Professor Greg Peters (Chalmers), Dr Gustav Sandin and Dr BJtim Spak (RISE), Dr Sandra Roos (RISE:Swerea IVF}. Business model feedback came from Professor Esben Rahbek Gjerdrum Pedersen and Post Doctorate Researcher Dr. Kirsti Reitan-Andersen (Copenhagen Business School). CCD LIDOC Post Doctorate Researcher Dr. Marion Real provided mapping insights and structure around people and place.

See below for related research stories:

Service Shirt

The Service Jacket

From Singular to Plural

Read the project report here Circular design researchers in residence

Service Shirt, Jacket Pattern 19.jpg Service Shirt, Jacket Pattern

See below for related research stories:

Service Shirt
The Service Jacket
From Singular to Plural