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Anant National University organised a webinar on ‘Conscious Fashion: Materials of the Future’, which was conducted on 14th October 2020, by the Fashion and Textile Design (Sustainable Innovation) team.

People consume textiles, as necessities and fashion, undermining its effect on the environment. We live in an economic system widely known as ‘The Materials Economy’. This revenue-driven system, which extracts raw materials and processes them into usable materials, is environmentally, socially and culturally unsustainable. To this end, AnantU organised this webinar to enlighten future designers and fashion enthusiasts on the harmful effects of fashion and how to make the industry more sustainable.

Organised as part of the ‘Sustainable Soft Material’ course, the webinar had sustainability champions Marina Chahboune, Founder of Closed Loop Fashion, Zuzana Gombosova, A biochemist and Founder of Malai Biomaterials and Shikha Shah, Founder of Ahmedabad based AltMat as the panellists. Through the webinar, the panellists shared their experiences and vision for the future by working towards replacing the ‘Materials economy’ with green innovations that are environmentally, socially and culturally viable. It discussed the issues in the industry and some effective solutions that can make the it sustainable.

About our speakers

Marina Chahboune: Founder of Closed Loop Fashion, she is an expert in sustainable textile production, sustainable innovations and circular economy principles. Marina has been working globally within all tiers of the supply chain, supervising projects for fibre and fabric development, environmentally friendly production processes and the implementation of closed-loop concepts and textile waste management.

Zuzana Gombosova: A biochemist and Founder of Malai Biomaterials, she started Malai in Karnataka, a newly developed biocomposite material that looks like leather. It is made from organic and sustainable bacterial cellulose, grown on agricultural waste sourced from the coconut industry in Southern India. Zuzanna works with the local farmers and processing units, collecting their waste coconut water and repurposing it to feed the bacteria’s cellulose production.

Shikha Shah: Founder of Ahmedabad based AltMat ‘, a company that converts agro-waste from plants like hemp, banana, nettle to alternative materials, she innovates and rediscovers sustainable materials through her venture.