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Quickfire Q&A

Q&A with Sass Brown

Sass Brown Associate Dean of the School of Art and Design at Fashion Institute of Technology and writer of Eco Fashion Talk swung by our London office recently and we took the opportunity to catch up on one of her projects.

Sass Brown

You chair the Summer Institute of Sustainability & Textiles as part of the Fashion Institute of Technology, can you tell us more about that?

Sustainability in Fashion and Textiles is a four-day series of lectures, discussions, panels, and hands-on workshops focusing on sustainability and technology in fashion and textiles. It’s designed for industry professionals as well as academics wishing to broaden their understanding of sustainability and how to support its integration into the industry.

What do participants do during the Summer Institute?

There are lectures, discussions, panels and, crucially, hands-on workshops. We’ve found that learning by doing is great. It has been the making sessions that have been the most popular and really got people, who work in the industry but who have never made garments themselves to see their work in a new way. This year we added an optional fifth day of visits to relevant industry locations.

How has the course enabled people to do more around sustainability when they get back to their day jobs?

They’ve been able to look at what they can realistically do in their roles as well as what they can do to effect wider change in their companies. We had one participant for example who went back and changed all the hang-tags because that was the one thing she had control over. And she did it step-by-step: first bio-degradable card, then looking at the ink, then moving on to using recycled card.