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Brief Published: 21 Feb 2020

Alexander McQueen Donates Deadstock to Fashion Students


British fashion house Alexander McQueen is working with design students to ease the cost of graduate collections while also ethically repurposing its deadstock materials.

The brand launched a fabric-donation programme during the A/W 20 season at London Fashion Week, which will see it donate leftover and unused fabrics to design students. The graduate design collections from students at Central Saint Martins and the University of Westminster featured pieces designed with fabrics retrieved through the scheme. Central Saint Martins is the alma mater of Alexander McQueen himself, as well as the label’s current creative director Sarah Burton.

The brand has long been a supporter of new, young design talent. The top floor of its London flagship store on Bond Street, which opened last year, features a study space for students to work and explore archival pieces from Alexander McQueen collections, as well as hosting talks, workshops and educational exhibitions. This fabric-donation programme will help design students ease the often steep cost of buying new fabrics in order to complete graduate collections, while also stressing the importance of sustainable design to the next generation of fashion designers right from university.

Alexander McQueen is also a brand that is known for never throwing away materials or samples – every piece made is stored and archived internally. This programme is an attractive move, as the brand is giving new life to leftover fabrics in a way that gives back to young designers and students, aligning with its brand image and message. More brands need to come up with creative and innovative ways to solve the problem of waste materials and deadstock – this is an example of a brand doing so in a way that supports its core values.

For more on responsible fashion initiatives, see our most recent Sustainability Round-Up. Also see Leveraging Longer Product Life and The Wealth in Waste from our Macro Trend Towards Our Sustainable Future. And look out for our Sustainable Fashion: A How-To Guide Spotlight Trend, publishing March 30.

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