CCD researchers are world-leading; they are experts in their field who specialise in practice research approaches to the challenges of circular design.

Lead Researchers

Rebecca Earley Professor of Sustainable Fashion Textile Design +

Rebecca Earley is Professor of Sustainable Fashion Textile Design and co-founder of Centre for Circular Design. Previously she led research initiatives at Textiles Environment Design (TED) at Chelsea between 1999-2017; and was also Director of the Textile Futures Research Centre at Central Saint Martins between 2010 – 2017. Rebecca develops sustainable fashion textile design strategy, curates exhibitions, facilitates workshops and creates original materials, models and prototypes. Since 2011 she has worked with Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) on the Mistra Future Fashion and Trash-2-Cash programmes. In 2007 she was nominated as a Morgan Stanley Great Briton for her contribution to sustainable fashion textiles in the UK.

Research Interests

Rebecca’s circular design interests began in the late 1990’s when from her small East London based studio, she worked with recycled PET fleece materials and discarded waste textiles to create award-winning products for over 25 international retail outlets. The unique and innovative technical and aesthetic approaches gradually became strategic design directives. She co-published TED’s The TEN in 2010 after several years of working with industry designers through facilitated workshops and commissioned projects. Her interests in textile recycling, strategy and innovation management means that she relishes working with both large and small industry partners to finds new ways to make circular textile products, services and systems.

Recent Publications

Dr Kate Goldsworthy Reader in Circular Textile Design +

Dr. Kate Goldsworthy is a designer and academic working to bridge science, industry and design through multidisciplinary & practice-led research. She is co-founder of the Centre for Circular Design at UAL, and a member of the EPSRC Forum in Manufacturing Research. Having worked in the design industry for over ten years, in 2012 she completed the first UK practice-based doctorate focused on ‘designing textiles for the circular economy’. Since then she has continued to explore future manufacturing and recovery contexts, including ten years with UK fibre-to-fibre technology start-up Worn Again. She advises on several industry boards and policy groups andher design work has been exhibited & collected internationally.

Research Interests

Through recent research projects, Mistra Future Fashion (2015-2019) and the EU funded Trash-2-Cash (2015-2018), Kate and the CCD team continue to explore the potential for design to drive a more circular materials economy. This includes devising collaboration tools and methods for engaging stakeholders from all parts of the materials value chain as well as hands-on material and process development. She is also interested in the potential for digitisation and new production models to provide more sustainable future manufacturing visions. Nonwovens production, hi-tech finishing processes and chemical recycling developments are all part of this remit. Her approach is practice-based, always placing making at the centre of her research, and collaborative, often across disciplines or embedded in industry contexts through knowledge exchange projects.

Recent Publications

Kay Politowicz Emeritus Professor of Textile Design +

Assisted by the application of The TEN strategies for design, Kay's work for the last ten years has been in developing a ‘wearable paper’ as part of the Mistra Future Fashion sustainability project. Using non-woven material based principally on cellulose wood pulp, Kay proposes pre-emptive design approaches to intractable problems in the fashion industry.

As part of the Centre for Circular Design, Kay has also been engaged in workshops with students and design businesses to create sustainable design solutions. Kay believes physical and psychological barriers to material and behavioural change can be overcome by working within a community of practice.

Research Interests

Kay is interested in the speculative and critical enquiry inherent in design for sustainability, where the connection between philosophical and practical enquiry can be bigger than problem solving. Kay develops physical material prototypes as a way of thinking through making, to test and communicate concepts.

Kay likes to employ a combination of humour, ambiguity and fiction to reflect real life conditions as a provocation for material and social change. Kay aims to design a good product with an intentionally short lifespan in a context of modern life. As complementary to the design of fewer, better products, it reflects the ecology of short and long lifespans in nature.

Recent Publications

Postdoctoral Researchers

Dr Helen Paine   +

Dr Helen Paine is a practice-led textile design researcher with core knowledge in the field of materials and innovation. Her background is in the field of knitted textiles for fashion, having graduated with an MA from RCA in 2011. Her PhD was part sponsored by industry and used a multi-disciplinary approach to investigate advanced methods for joining textiles with a focus on new functional seaming and surface techniques for stretchy fabrics. Since completing her PhD, Helen has worked in industry and academia on material innovation research projects.

Research Interests

Helen’s research interests are in the field of future textiles manufacturing and material innovation using a multi-disciplinary STEAM approach. She is interested in the value craft knowledge and making can bring to material innovation and enjoys working with industry to demonstrate applied outcomes for her research. Helen is involved in the research and development of new sustainable processes and materials at Centre for Circular Design, working with industry and academic specialists across the textile product lifecycle.

Recent Publications

  • Helen Paine, Kate Goldsworthy and Sharon Baurley (2018) ‘Evolutionary Approach of a Textile Designer through Cross-Disciplinary Research Practice’, in: Evolutionary Approach of a Textile Designer through Cross-Disciplinary Research Practice. London, UK: Loughborough University London

PhD Researchers

Cathryn Hall   +

Cathryn is a PhD researcher at the Centre for Circular Design (CCD). She joined CCD previously as the research assistant, on the Mistra Future Fashion programme working on ‘disrupting patterns’ project with Swedish Fashion Brand Filippa K. She is currently undertaking her second year of practice based doctoral study within the field of mechanical textile recycling under Dr Kate Goldsworthy and Professor Rebecca Earley.

Research Interests

Cathryn’s research interests are encompassed by a design-led approach for the mechanical recycling of mixed fibre textiles. Her research focuses on the most problematic issue of mixed fibres which are the product of the textile industry’s consistent use of blended materials - for functional, economic and aesthetic purposes. Taking a systematic view of the industry from both macro and micro levels, within the framework of a circular economy. This research addresses how textile designer-makers might find solutions, across all textile media - non-woven, woven and knit, to create circular fibres of the future

Laetitia Forst   +

Laetitia Forst is a multi-technique textile designer trained at ENSAD Paris in skills covering weave, knit, print and other textile embellishment techniques. Her practice explores the tension between technical challenges and creativity in sustainable design for textiles. Combining traditional techniques with new technologies, her designs explores the creative potential of juxtaposing contrasting materials and allowing for flexibility in the future lives of the material or objects, whether this be as modular textiles or fabrics that evolve through time to eventually reach an optimal end of life treatment in a circular economy.

Research Interests

Laetitia’s ongoing PhD research project at the Centre for Circular Design at University of the Arts London aims to explore design driven solutions for incorporating ease of recyclability into textiles. The project takes a pro-active approach to developing alternatives to the unsustainable status-quo in the creation of blends through the use of design for disassembly, the design of products and materials that can be taken apart to divert their components from waste streams. This strategy is adapted to the scale of textiles and to the specifics of creative textile design practice in an effort to design waste out of our systems from the very first stages of materials creation.

Emmeline Child   +

Emmeline is a fashion and textile designer with commercial industry experience. Her practice seeks to create design-led solutions to textile waste in the supply chain. Emmeline has presented her work in the UK and internationally through both exhibits and conferences.

Emmeline is a proficient educator and fellow of the Higher Education Academy for her embedded knowledge around teaching and learning. She is the programme leader for the Fashion and Textiles degree at the University of Northampton, runs workshops and lectures in interdisciplinary subjects inthe UK and internationally, and externally she advises and examines on a number of profiled fashion courses.

Research Interests

Emmeline utilises her commercial and academic experience to profile the barriers and opportunities in the industry pertaining textile waste in its current set-up, while developing guidelines and design prototypes that evidence the possibilities of upscaling product fallout. Emmeline seeks design solutions for dissemination to different market levels of the industry, the outcome of whichwill facilitate manufacturers and brands with the knowledge to embed more circular systems, while offering alternative revenue streams utilising textile waste.

Emmeline’s research seeks to create practical solutions and frameworks to support the stream lining of factory production, aiming to minimise the amount of waste in the process.

Recent Publications

Bridget Harvey   +

Bridget is a maker and researcher, investigating craft processes and concepts through making - what we make, how we make it, and why that matters. She makes and exhibits propositional artefacts, testing and communicating ideas, and is an experienced curator and writer. Bridget is a skilled workshop facilitator, gives talks, and an associate lecturer at Camberwell College of Arts and Chelsea College of Art. She is currently Fashioned from Nature Maker in Residence at the V&A until July 2019.

Research Interests

Through her practice, Bridget explores narrative patinas - use, repair, and memory – and emotional engagement with our possessions. Previous research in to slowness and playfulness in practice led her to investigate repair-making for her AHRC PhD, Repair-Making: Craft, Activism, Narrative which looks at repair both before and after the break, and as a material and social action. Deeply embedded in sustainable thinking, she seeks to understand our (dis)engagement with material cultures, and simultaneously embedding, showing and hiding narrative, she aims to re-story the familiar, and reconstruct the forgotten.

Miriam Ribul   +

Miriam has worked with CCD since 2011 when she joined the team to work on the Mistra Future Fashion project, and stayed to complete her PhD 2015-2019. Her practice reaches beyond disciplinary boundaries and combines approaches from textile design and material science to facilitate material driven change. She has published internationally, consulted on material innovation projects and delivered teaching on sustainable design, material futures and circular design. In 2019 Miriam joined the Burberry Material Futures Research Group (RCA), as Research Fellow in Materials Circularity for Distributed Manufacture.

Research Interests

Miriam's PhD research was funded by the London Doctoral Design Centre (AHRC) and is focussed on innovative processes for regenerated cellulose from textile waste in the context of a circular bioeconomy. To this end Miriam has collaborated with a network of leading material scientists including with the Bioeconomy Division at RISE Research Institutes of Sweden and the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems at Aalto University’s School of Chemical Engineering in Finland. Miriam’s research develops new models for transparency, regeneration and fabrication using recycled and renewable biomaterials.

Associate Researchers

Dr Rosie Hornbuckle   +

Rosie’s interest in material circularity began when working for Rematerialise, - a collection of materials selected by sustainability criteria - based at Kingston University, London. Whilst at Kingston Rosie also completed an AHRC-funded Collaborative PhD entitled Design and the Material Cycle. In 2015 Rosie joined CCD as Post-Doctoral Research Assistant on the EU H2020 Trash-to-Cash project where she was the lead for the design research task aimed at developing a new methodology for Design-Driven Material Innovation (DDMI). Rosie has recently joined the EU H2020 Pharma-Factory project at London College of Communication (UAL) as Post-Doctoral Research Fellow and continues to work closely with CCD on research outputs, and consultancy projects.

Research Interests

Rosie’s central research interest is the role of designers in enabling socially and environmentally considerate actions. At Kingston this was primarily focussed on the selection of recycled materials, looking at how design skills were used to boundary-span the worlds of design and material supply. Through her Post-Doctoral work Rosie’s research has evolved to look at the role of designers in multi-stakeholder communication, specifically within design-science projects where technology and innovation provide the opportunity for alternative futures. Rosie’s stance is that designers have the potential to enable the collaboration essential for realising more sustainable futures.

Recent Publications

Dr Marion Real   +

After participating in a collaborative European research project in circular economy (Retrace), Marion joined CCD on an LDOC award for 2018 to discuss the potential of convivial technologies and local production networks through different circular fashion speed narratives. She has developed strong synergies with different collectives like repairing and upcycling centres, micro-manufacturing projects and more particularly with a French industry/research group, “la chaireBALI” dedicated to explore disruptive material and processes for a future lifestyle industry. She runs design workshops to debate the circular economy’s best practices in territories, or for challenging the future of organizations with original stakeholder mapping and sustainable business model tools. She also delivers more in-depth research interventions using ethnographical and participatory action research techniques.

Research Interests

Marion is a systemic design researcher exploring social representations in circular transitions. Her expertise enlarges user experience design, cognitive sciences, systemic for circular regions, eco-innovation and socially responsible design.

Dr Clara Vuletich   +

Clara is a sustainability strategist and designer who uses design-led methods and creative thinking with brands, designers and consumers to create systemic change for a clean and ethical fashion industry. She has ten years of experience in the space in the UK and Europe and is now based in Sydney, Australia. Clara has consulted on sustainable design training and development to brands including H & M (Sweden) and VF. Corp (US); and has recently established a consultancy business working with Australian fashion brands and retailers on sustainable and circular strategies.

Research Interests

Clara completed a PhD in sustainable fashion/textiles through the MISTRA Future Fashion research programme. She is an Associate Researcher with the Centre for Circular Design (CCD) at University of the Arts London, and has several funded research proposals in development to investigate pre/post-consumer textile waste and end-of-life issues in Australia. Clara also trained as a Kundalini yoga teacher and has developed the Sutra Stitching workshop methodology, that explores the intersection between mindfulness and textile craft. She continues to be interested in where human nature intersects with design and sustainability.

Dr Lucy Norris   +

Lucy is a social anthropologist with a background in material culture. Her research focuses on cultural perceptions of materials, concepts of value, systems of exchange and recycling economies. She has worked in India, the UK and Germany researching local and global secondary economies, and is currently exploring design concepts for the emerging circular economy and their social contexts. Her research has been published in a range of academic journals and books, and she regularly presents at international conferences, seminars and workshops. Creative collaborations with visual artists have resulted in an accompanying body of work including photography, film and writing, disseminated through exhibitions, screenings and talks.

Research Interests

Lucy has carried out ethnographic fieldwork researching the life-cycle of clothing in Delhi, the textile recycling industry in north India, industrial handloom-weaving cooperatives in Kerala, and the structure of the used textile economy in the UK. Understanding the perceptions of materiality and concepts of value that underpin people’s sense of self and relationships to others is central to her work, and how these are implicated in wider exchange systems. This has led to new research questions concerning the design of products and systems as strategies for sustainability and social engagement with emerging models of the circular economy. These include the scales at which circularity of resources might be implemented, and their implications for how political and economic relations of power will be structured in the future.

Previous Contributors

Matilda Aspinall   +
Dr Jen Ballie   +
Lucy Batchelor   +
Lorna Bircham   +
Melanie Bowles   +
Emma D’Arcey   +
Isabel Dodd   +
Dr Dawn Ellams   +

Staff Profile

Recent Publications

Dr Kate Fletcher   +
Dr Frances Geesin   +
Jackie Herald   +
Gabrielle Miller   +
Dr Emma Neuberg   +
Susan Noble   +
Gary Page   +
Kathy Round   +
Caryn Simonson   +
Anne Smith   +
Alison Taylor   +
Josefin Tissingh   +
Brad Turner   +