Circulate on Fridays: Biodegradable tyres, the future of fashion and more!

Publication Date: 

Friday, 30 June 2017 - 4:59pm

Author: 

Seb Egerton-Read

This weekend’s roundup of circular economy related stories includes the “Netflix for fashion”, new biodegradable tyres and much more…

A wheel with no air designed to last as long as the vehicle, a tread that can be “replenished” by a 3D printer with the same performance as a conventional thread, and a tyre that is connected and communicates with the rest of the vehicle. Michelin’s 100% biodegradable concept tyre is about vision and imagination, how dramatic could its hypothetical impact be?

“What if we lived in a world where we didn’t own anything? I’m not talking about giving away all of our possessions and living in a yurt. I mean what if we could still enjoy all of the latest gadgets and appliances we love, and the clothing and furniture we need, but we just paid to use them instead of bought and owned them outright?” Read Nick Lazaridis’ piece about the circular economy and HP’s Instant Ink example on the Huffington Post.

Are algorithms the future of designing and distributing clothing? Fast Company examine the “Netflix of fashion”, a company called Stitch Fix, which connects with customers who fill out a detailed questionnaire about their size, clothing fits, styles, colours and are then part of an online subscription service based on needs. Stitch Fix has to grown to over 5700 employees and has been profitable since 2014, the implications and opportunities to recapture clothing is as yet untapped, but the subscription nature of the service does offer opportunities not afforded to physical retailers.

There are also a number of incumbent fashion industry players aiming to shift their business models with a focus on reducing leakage of material into natural systems and the potential to design a different system. Earlier this week, Sustainable Brands highlighted Stella McCartney, C&A and WRAP as examples.

Launch Forth, a maker community and platform born out of Local Motors (the company credited with creating the first 3D printed car), has unveiled a new kind of innovation platform engaging with a 70,000 strong group of “solvers”. The Lead of that project, Elle Shelley, recently addresses the NewCo Shift Forum, and they’ve published a transcript of her talk here.

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