Responsible Innovation January 13th, 2021

PATRICK MCDOWELL INTERVIEW

When and how did you move towards sustainability? 

I was 13 years old and my parents refused to buy me a new backpack for school, so I decided to make one myself. My art teacher was enthusiastic and urged me to continue creating, not only with bags but also with clothes. Eight years later I was at Central Saint Martins reflecting on the fashion industry’s waste problem and writing my dissertation on the matter. Let’s say I’ve always been thinking and creating sustainably but only at university did I really understand what it meant. 

Do you think that sustainable fashion is really possible? 

Well, the most sustainable thing of course would be not to produce anything at all, I believe we produce millions of clothes by trying to guess what people might want to buy... that’s why there are a lot of unsold stock.  If it were possible to transform the productions of the whole industry according to orders, the waste would decrease radically and people would stop buying fast fashion, because by waiting he would realize that he needs something thought rather than five impulse purchases».

What are you presenting at WSM?

«It is a collection created to celebrate diversity, but it is also interesting because being born during the pandemic it is entirely digital».

Do you think that the digitalization that we experienced during the pandemic will help sustainability?

I think that technology is essentially an instrument and as such can be used well or badly. On the one hand, digital clothes can fill that excessive and superficial expressive need today filled by fast fashion».

The last milestone you’re proud of

«The collaboration with Pinko: it’s a really good sign that a company like this wanted to recover and renew unsold archival garments to put them back in circulation. It is a pioneering move and it is also the easiest way to embark on a path of sustainability».

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