Fashion is undergoing a change in attitude following the recent pandemic, and luxury woollen mill AW Hainsworth has confirmed its commitment to the slow fashion movement by becoming the first mill in the UK where garments can be created from raw fibre to completed piece under one roof.
The unique service will be offered by Studio H, a partnership between AW Hainsworth and garment manufacturing experts Reshore Apparel. A combination of technological investment and traditional manufacturing techniques will reduce carbon emissions and allow garments to be produced with minimal waste.
The service is expected to be of interest to emerging designers seeking a straightforward and sustainable manufacturing solution.
Julie Roberts, Marketing Manager at AW Hainsworth, says: “As a business based on the pillars of quality and craftsmanship, AW Hainsworth is inherently aligned with principles of sustainability. Having operated at our mill for 236 years with generations of skilled artisans, we weave cloth of an impeccable standard that will last for many years. Our processes are lean, we have transparency in our supply chain and over the years we have increasingly committed to minimising waste and reducing our impact on the environment.
“Now, by partnering with Reshore Apparel to establish Studio H, we are taking this commitment a step further. We can uniquely create garments all the way from raw wool to completion, under one roof, meaning carbon emissions are reduced, provenance is crystal clear and the utmost quality is guaranteed. Designers and retailers can be confident they are investing in British manufacturing with a conscience.
“All of this is part of our ongoing efforts to champion the principles of the slow fashion movement, meaning that we are minimising our impact on the environment, treating the people we work with ethically and creating garments that can be worn and loved for many years.”
The Studio H partnership will benefit from Reshore Apparel’s investment in digital 3D imaging technology from Italian company Morgan to create moving renders of designs before anything is put into production. The imaging software allows designers to see how patterns and fabrics will sit against the body on a virtual catwalk, and visualise how the finished piece will look, move and perform so that fewer samples need to be created, further reducing waste and carbon emissions. The company is also pursuing zero waste cutting techniques that will minimise fabric offcuts.
Reshore Apparel is a British clothing manufacturer owned by David and Julie Price, who have are both vastly experienced in the textile industry, having worked with companies such as M&S, F&F at Tesco and Next. Julia says: “As passionate advocates for responsibility in the clothing industry, this partnership makes complete sense to us. We find it so disappointing when large scale retailers appear to lack a social conscience.
“We want to provide responsible sourcing options for retailers and designers of all sizes, creating better quality garments closer to home. We believe consumer demand in this area is only going to grow, with the recent pandemic encouraging many to purchase more mindfully.”
Reshore’s extensive experience in the industry means they can be agile and adapt to the needs of the customer, providing unmatched expertise and attention to detail.
AW Hainsworth also hopes to spark a wider conversation about cloth producers and the role they can play in the slow fashion movement. Julie says: “The unique thing about slow fashion is that it requires buy in at every single stage of the supply chain. We can create the most premium, long lasting cloth but if it is used wastefully by a designer, over stocked by a retailer or left unworn by the consumer, then it is no longer aligned with slow fashion.
“We believe textile manufacturers need to be more vocal in conversations about the future of the fashion industry and think more holistically about how they can share responsibility for the impact the fashion industry has on the planet and on society.”
To learn more about Slow Fashion, why it is important and how you can get involved, visit our dedicated Slow Fashion hub.