AFC FashTech Lab is a pilot program run by the Australian Fashion Council (AFC) and supported by City of Sydney. The first program in 2022 partnered fashion brands with technology businesses to trial a digital sampling workflow. In this demonstration, the UTS Data Arena will exhibit the lab’s digital clothing samples and environmental savings in a 360-degree display.
The pilot was created to explore alternatives to the physical production of clothing samples, which can take several months as designers test measurements, drape, volume and fit for new garments. Most of these samples are unsellable and end up in landfill, impacting the bottom line for brands and polluting the environment. The program revealed that by producing 30 digital samples in place of physical samples, fashion brands cut their sampling costs by 50 per cent, shortened their sampling time from 12 to 4 weeks, and prevented up to 450 metres of textile waste.
The AFC has licensed WRAP UK's Textiles 2030 Footprint Calculator to quantify the total carbon, water and textile waste saved by the AFC FashTech Lab. The calculator examines the full lifecycle data for garments, from fibre extraction, processing and production, to being used, washed, reused, recycled and processed at end-of-life.
Dr Lisa Lake is the director of the Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Fashion + Textiles, a UTS partnership with TAFE NSW. She is a pioneer in the Australian sustainable fashion movement, having authored Sustainability with Style in 2012 and co-founding Clean Cut, an organisation that brought the first sustainable fashion show to Sydney Fashion Week in 2014. Lake helped develop the sustainability strategy for the University of Sydney and previously led the marketing team at the Green Building Council of Australia.
Pete Smit is an experienced technology entrepreneur with more than 10 years’ experience in the startup ecosystem. He is the founder and CEO of Style Atlas, a leading fashion tech startup based in Sydney. Style Atlas' mission is to develop technology solutions that help fashion brands become more environmentally and economically sustainable.
On Gadigal land
UTS 81 Broadway
Sydney New South Wales 2007
19 September 2023