Loomstate, Rogan Gregory's and Scott Mackinlay Hahn's eco-friendly label, has debuted its first zero-waste garment developed in collaboration with Parsons The New School for Design. The winning design, an anorak designed by recent Parsons graduate Andria Crescioni, is available at the ROGAN boutique located on the Bowery and at the Loomstate online store. Proceeds from the sale of the anorak will benefit scholarship funds at Parsons.
"Zero waste fashion is an innovative design process that produces no fabric waste. In effect, patternmaking becomes an integral part of the process, creating a richer, more sustainable design practice," said Simon Collins, dean of the School of Fashion at Parsons. "Through this collaboration, we have proven that zero waste can be a viable manufacturing process for designers."
Timo Rissanen, Parsons assistant professor of Fashion Design and Sustainability and an expert in zero waste fashion, developed the course in which students learned the intricacies of this approach to design. Seventeen students took part in the original course, with Hahn and Gregory served as mentors, educating students about such issues as sourcing, dyeing, finishing, and energy consumption of organic denim. Hahn, Gregory and fashion consulant Julie Gilhart helped to determine the winning design. Loomstate continued to guide Crescioni in the manufacturing of the garment from development through production.
"Parsons produces some of the top talent in the industry, and we were impressed with its commitment to challenging students to rethink the design and manufacturing process within the context of sustainability," said Hahn of Loomstate. "We founded Loomstate in 2004 to raise awareness and create demand for certified organic cotton produced through socially and environmentally responsible methods."
Beginning with the design process in its New York studio, Loomstate manages all stages of manufacturing, from the fabric mills, to the cut-and-sew and dying facilities, and finally the laundries, to ensure responsible manufacturing processes. All of its factory partners are required to adhere to a code of conduct and must use the highest environmental and labor standards, controlling factory pollution, and enforcing fair labor as the cornerstone of the effort. Loomstate uses 100 percent certified organic cotton from various regions of the world such as Turkey, Peru, Africa, India and the USA.
After graduating this past May, Crescioni has pursued her interest in sustainable and socially engaged design with the Awamaki Lab, a Peruvian non-profit that works with indigenous female weavers, where she is developing a capsule collection. She joins an influential and growing roster of Parsons alumni, from Yeohlee Teng, a pioneer of zero-waste fashion, to a new generation of designers such as Katie King of JF & Son, which has created a vertically integrated studio in India utilizing traditional artisans; and Erin Beatty of SUNO, which produces its garments in Kenya, India, and Peru, combining high-end tailoring with traditional, local artisan techniques.