UAL’s Centre for Circular Design plays a leading role in the development of design guidelines for the HEREWEAR project, which aims to revolutionise the fashion industry, by producing bio-based circular textiles and consequently develop a European market for locally-produced garments from agricultural bio-based waste. In its recent studies and report, UAL has published some details regarding the HEREWEAR Project – so let’s dive into it!


A New Bio-Based Materials Collection


The project team in London has been gathering and analysing a sample collection of Bio-based materials. The 90+ references that were collected represent a range of feedstocks and processes as well as the end of life trajectories for bio-based materials. The sample collection provides the basis for a design-led understanding of the challenges and opportunities for bio-based materials in a circular and local context, grounding the research in the experience of interacting with the materials.


Categorising the Bio-Based Materials Collection


Using the samples to support conversation with material providers and HEREWEAR experts, a categorisation emerged that could describe the bio-based material life cycle. The visual representation that is shown below – the Bio-Based Material Lifecycle Map – guides much of the description of bio-based materials and processes.


Lifecycle map for bio-based materials


This section of the report lays out a definition of bio-based that is suited to the HEREWEAR project, incorporating a description of biomaterials and bio-synthetic textiles, then it uses the life cycle map to detail this understanding of the material category. 

The visualisation is complemented with a definition of each stage of the lifecycle and the different processes available for bio-based materials within it. It is offered as a working tool to support the next stages of the research. The samples from the collection are presented in the context of their availability timeframe, to highlight the challenges for designers when wanting to access and use them.


The Bio TEN Design Guidelines

This deliverable also presents the first iteration of the design guidelines that will be used with the HEREWEAR partners and community. They have been created through a process of bringing together multiple existing sustainable and circular guidelines from within and outside the HEREWEAR project, to create a thorough reframing of the field, issues and challenges.

The framework has been adapted to fit the requirements of circular bio-economy contexts – making use of regenerative resources, with minimal toxicity, for extended life products, all with clear end-of-life routes identified from the outset. In addition, the guidelines have been written to enable design stakeholders to understand how bio-based materials made from waste can be produced, used and re-used in local and regional contexts. The guidelines have been written by aligning the framing to the work going on in the other HEREWEAR work packages, to ensure they are rigorously tested through the project work. All these elements together make the Bio TEN guidelines unique and suitable for the needs of the design stakeholders who will be using them.


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