Rebecca Siggers

7 Ways Luxury Meets Sustainability In Modern Fashion Design 

eco friendly fashion

The importance of sustainability in retail has never been higher, especially for fashion and luxury businesses.  

Sustainability is no longer simply a catchphrase or a marketing ploy; it is increasingly a way of life. It no longer merely refers to whether a thing is reusable or recyclable. Instead, it is relevant to all aspects of today’s fashion.  

Hence, sustainability should now be considered a holistic component of a firm, from the materials utilized to their sourcing, processing, and transportation. 

This article lists 7 ways luxury meets sustainability in modern fashion design.  

Ethical Sourcing of Materials 

One of the primary ways luxury meets sustainability in fashion design is through the ethical sourcing of materials.  

Conventional luxury fashion has long used expensive and exclusive materials, even if they harmed the environment and endangered species. But today, contemporary luxury brands are now paying for sustainable options. 

For example, Stella McCartney is one example that has used organic cotton, recycled polyester, or sustainably sourced wool. Hermès has gone as far as employing mycelium to create vegan leather, which proves that it is possible to create luxurious textures without killing animals.  

The use of such materials helps conserve the environment and eliminates vices such as child labor and repression of workers’ wages in the supply chain. 

Circular Fashion and Upcycling 

Sustainable fashion is a new approach to fashion that can be described as the concept of creating objects while considering their life cycle.  

Currently, luxury fashion brands are embracing circular fashion, a concept that seeks to reduce waste and optimize the lifespan of goods. 

For example, Gucci Off The Grid includes recycled, organic, bio-based, and sustainably sourced products. In the same vein, there is upcycling, which involves reusing waste materials to create better-quality products.  

Some brands, such as Miu Miu, have also embraced vintage upcycling and made collections which include vintage pieces. 

Slow Fashion and Timeless Design 

Unlike the fast fashion system that quickly produces clothes and trends, luxury brands are going slow fashion way. This approach is very unique because it focuses on quality rather than quantity, urging consumers to buy genuine products that cannot be replaced every few months. 

Elite brands such as Chanel or Louis Vuitton produce items that are expected to be handed down from generation to generation. Through designing timeless and well-built garments, these brands discourage people from frequent consumption and the impact that results from it. 

Transparent and Ethical Supply Chains 

Introducing transparency in the supply chain is helpful in establishing sustainable practices.  

Through such tags, customers feel the urge to know how and where their products are produced. Prestige brands are aiming to adapt to this by ensuring that their supply chain is more sustainable and ethical. 

Companies such as Burberry reveal information on their policies and performance in global supply chain management and sustainability. They also work with other companies in order to have ethical standards that include payment of employees and the method used in the production process that is environmentally friendly. 

Innovative Eco-friendly Technologies 

Through innovation, luxury and sustainability come together hand in hand. New technologies and innovations are being introduced in order to produce fashion products that can be more environmentally sustainable. 

The current LVMH, the luxury goods manufacturer which owns Louis Vuitton, Dior and several other brands, has also focused on the R&D of sustainable materials and techniques.  

Another of them is the use of bio-degradable plastics for packing, which greatly helps in cutting down on waste. However, advancement in 3D printing are being used to produce complex structures with less material waste. 

Sustainable Fashion Certifications 

It is essential to certify the sustainability claims of luxury brands with certifications and standards. Therefore, different labels including the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), Fair Trade or the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), make it easier for consumers to identify sustainability. 

Companies such as Prada and Bottega Veneta are currently pursuing certification to convince customers of their sustainability efforts. They include several features, such as the organic nature of used materials, fair treatment of employees, and eco-friendly production. 

Social and Environmental Initiatives 

In addition to their tangible goods, luxury brands are increasingly engaging with more extensive social and environmental projects. All these measures demonstrate the concept of the triple bottom line approach, where social aspects are considered as well.  

Kering company, which owns brands like Gucci and Saint Laurent, has implemented several environmental and social responsibility activities. Their “Craftsmanship and Innovation” program is dedicated to sustainable luxury in the fashion industry and Environmental Profit & Loss (EP&L), which estimates their organization’s environmental footprint.  

They fund wildlife conservation and are responsible for sourcing initiatives. 


The integration of luxury and sustainability in contemporary fashion design is revolutionizing the fashion world. This is made possible through the implementation of the following; ethical sourcing, circular fashion and slow fashion, supply chain transparency, investing in technologies that are environmentally friendly, certification and social and environmental causes.  

This change satisfies the emerging consumer’s need for responsible fashion and guarantees the sustainability of the fashion business.  

With consumers gaining awareness, luxury brands supporting sustainability are likely to go up and become dominant since you do not have to compromise luxury for responsibility. 


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