We at KappAhl want to create fashion that’s good quality and great value, produced with care and respect for both people and the environment.
We have come a long way, but we also know that there is a lot that remains to be done.
The KappAhl Sustainable Design Contest is a competition for students of fashion
and textiles who want to get involved in developing the sustainable design solutions of the future.

Congratulations Lovisa Sandrine Malmberg Gomis

Now we have chosen our winner for Sustainable Design Contest and the winner is Lovisa from Sweden that convinced and impressed our jury with her idea of creating different pieces from one.

The jury’s words:
"For her smart idea to create several garments out of one and also work with zero waste design. It is technically skilled and a challenge. The idea is playful, yet commercial and accessible while contributing to the decreased abundance when you get several pieces in one. The garments are obviously made in sustainable materials and all this together creates a winning concept. An exciting way to look at sustainability."

Get to know the winner

Name: Lovisa Sandrine Malmberg Gomis
Age: 28
Where do you live: Paris

Where do you come from: I grew up in Gothenburg. My mom is swedish and my dad comes from France but originally from Senegal.

Education: Three years of fashion design and pattern design at ESMOD in Paris. Five internships. Also worked as stylist and stylist assistant in Oslo for four years.

Favorite designer: Phoebe Philo for Celine, J.W. Anderson, Stella McCartney, Kym Ellery for Ellery, Haider Ackermann, Nicolas Ghesquière when he worked for Balenciaga, Alessandro Dell'Acqua for No°21, Demna Gvasalia for Vêtements, and of course the Swedish designers as Altewaisaome, Carin Wester, Rodebjer, Stine Goya, Anders HAAL, Ann Sofie Back and many more.

Congratulation Lovisa, how does is feel? Wonderful and fantastic! I had a dream with this idea to get it done by a large established company and as silly as it sounds, the dream actually came true.

How did you get in to fashion? Fashion designer was the first profession I was introduced to and the first profession I ever really understood. My grandmother worked as a fashion designer and I spent my summer holidays sketching and sewing in her atelier. My grandmother working as a designer and my uncles being in the textilebusiness has been a contributing factor to my interest in fashion. It was like an exciting museum to be x in my grandmothers attic and I could spend my time there going through generation of clothes. I decided already in my early years that I wanted to work with fashion.

Tell us about your winning idea? I always defended the environment. To have a passion for the fashion industry and at the same time know the impact it has on the environment has been a moral issue for me. During my education I started to work with the concept Zero Waste, which means that you use all of the fabric without anything go to waste, the leftover fabric could always be used to something else as a replaceable collar.

My concept is based on recycling and to give the clothes a longer lifetime. We are buying more clothes than ever and every year millions of tons gets thrown a way. We buy clothes for special occasions or needs that only get used once. I want to give the clothes a longer lifetime through creating a smart piece that is sustainable, good for the environment, practical and fun for the customer. A piece of clothing that could be used in different ways for different occasions and seasons. The idea also involves the possibility to recycle inside your own wardrobe and the items would be made of recycled or organically produced materials.

What are your expectations for cooperation with KappAhl? I have great expectations for this collaboration! I think it will be very educational and I’m looking forward to see how a large company like Kappahl works. I have lots of ideas that I think we could develop together and of course I hope it will be a hit! It’s so important that large commercial companies can offer their customers sustainable fashion.

What do you dream of doing in the future? Being able to contribute to a cleaner future, to continue work creatively and to be happy.

Sustainable design

Sustainability is crucial for both our industry and our customers. KappAhl’s ambition is to be a market player that makes its own contribution to the development of working methods for sustainable design and production.

Over 80 percent of a product’s environmental impact is determined at the drawing board, making sustainable design a very broad concept. All that needs to be developed is the ideas!


What is sustainable design?

Design intended to have a positive effect on people and the environment. Materials, production processes, quality, longevity and other aspects are consciously chosen to mitigate the negative impact of the product throughout its life cycle and maximise its positive impact. Design that takes into consideration the limitations of our planet, animal welfare and human rights.

What can sustainable design mean for the fashion industry?

Sustainable design is a broad concept that encompasses many facets. It might mean that the material has a lower impact on the environment and is sustainable. It might mean that the garment has a classic, timeless style which makes it sustainable. It might mean designing garments to make maximum use of the fabric or using as much of the fabric as possible in the production process to reduce waste. It could also mean choosing different processing and dyeing techniques that affect the environment in different ways. The possibilities are endless. It's just the ideas that need developing.

Why is this so important?

More than 80% of a product's environmental impact is determined at the drawing board. Our designers and purchasers make sustainable choices every day, but we need to create conditions for a more systematic approach in order to meet our sustainable design criteria. This should encompass opportunities for recycling, resource efficiency, quality, choice of materials and more. Our goal is for all products to meet our sustainability criteria by 2020.

What do you mean by large-scale production?

KappAhl brings fashion to many people and we have extensive production and, unfortunately, do not have any possibility of working with hand-crafted production. If we are to develop the textile industry and satisfy all needs, but also take into account the environment and the people who work in the industry, we need to develop our design and manufacturing processes. Much of it starts right at the conception stage at the design table.





Recommended reading

Fletcher, K. (2008), Sustainable Fashion and Textiles, Earthscan Ltd. UK