In a constructive and visionary spirit, the Beyond Fashion Summit 2012 concluded it’s two days conference programme. On the 15th and 16th of November, over 150 professionals from the fashion and textile industry came together to discuss and reflect the topic of „Hypernature“. Speakers and participants explored solutions in the textile chain through new processes and digital technologies.

The event’s new, renown fashion-venue STATION-Berlin in Kreuzberg has proven to be the right step forward. „We are very satisfied“, says Fredericke Winkler from Beyond Berlin, who organized the Summit together with Lena Nocke and Frans Prins. „It is off course a positive development that we had more participants. Even more important for us is the extraordinary high quality of our audience and speakers,“ continues Winkler.

And we’re off… Beyond Fashion Summit 2012 in full swing #bfs12

Among the professional visitors were many high profile representatives from industry, commerce, science and politics, who explored innovative concepts and new ways in a common dialogue.  Eleven international lecturers and a discussion panel envisioned philosophical concepts and future business models, showed best practices and possibilities for new, ethical and innovative product generations.

Wise words came from environmental philosopher Warwick Fox: „‘the best example of any one kind often has a responsively cohesive view of things’ #bfs12

A central point of discussion was the question, by which values future fashion will be lead. Philosopher Warwick Fox gave a contextual framework and called the public to think multidimensional: „Think holistic!“, said Fox. Only then can one be ethically and morally uncontentious.

Hendrik-Jan Grievink of the think tank Next Nature dared to define a provocative definition of the Summit title. His conclusion: in the future, we will be confronted by a „more raffinated, more secure, aesthetically optimized, enlarged, highly patented, better version of our environment.“

The founder of People Tree, Safia Minney, reported about the success story of her fashion brand, a story that goes back over more then ten years. Started on a small scale in Japan, People Tree is now present in over 600 points of sale all over the world, without loosing it’s core values of fair trade, organic and handcraft.

“Technology can help transparency” Mark Starmanns @netzfairemode #bfs12

At the end of the first conference day, Mark Starmanns, (Netzwerk Fair Mode), Safia Minney (People Tree), Norbert Henzel (University of Oldenburg), Caroline Ducker (Etsy) and moderator Frans Prins (Beyond Berlin) where on stage to discuss transparency in the fashion industry, future consumer trends and the question: how important is the implementation of modern technologies for future minded fashion?

On Friday, the themes of the first conference day where deepened out and explored in several workshops, and the outputs where discussed with the audience. Parallel, Beyond Berlin organized a round table in collaboration with the International Association of the Natural Textile Industry (IVN). It had the goal to bring together NGOs and initiatives and formulate a common agenda that could be used by all participating organizations, politically as well as in communications.

The results:

Working in a sustainable way with natural and synthetic fibres: “Sustainable is smarter design and optimization” #bfs12

Transparency in the supply chain: “We need to regulate standards & certificates to create trust” #bfs12

Recycling, the new organic? “Too many clothes are thrown away … so: Reduce! Reuse! Recycle! … Buy Less & Choose Well!” #bfs12

Hacking for fashion: “Technology is here to aid transparency in the fashion industry” #bfs12

Cotton Futures: what will the cotton industry look like in 2025: “Don’t take cotton for granted.” #bfs12

Cotton in 2025 … “A vision for the future of cotton: zero waste techno cotton from field to printer and back again” #bfs12

Round table on ethics in the fashion industry: to be continued … (we will meet again) – #bfs12

We are already looking forward to the next edition of the Beyond Fashion Summit in 2013! #bfs13

Photos by Sebastian Marggraf

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