Polestar and GANNI partner at the world’s most sustainable fashion week in Copenhagen

Last week the fashion industry gathered in Denmark for Copenhagen Fashion Week (CPHFW), famous for its progressive labels and forward-thinking design. CPHFW is also recognised for its world-renowned sustainability action plan. So, when sustainability trailblazer GANNI asked us to partner up, we packed our bags and left for Copenhagen. 

In an effort to tackle the fashion industry’s enormous impact on the planet, CPHFW is placing sustainability at the top of its agenda. Aiming to set a new industry standard, the “fifth fashion week” has created a sustainability action plan which means all participating brands must meet 18 minimum requirements around materials, labour and business practices. Designers who fail to meet these requirements are not allowed to participate in the event.  

As such, CPHFW is streets ahead of any other fashion week when it comes to demonstrating that fashion can be a positive force for change. 

Danish fashion brand GANNI is one of the most popular brands showcasing their collection during CPHFW and they’re on a journey to become a more responsible version of themselves, committed to making better choices to minimise their environmental impact. 

We’ve always refrained from talking about sustainability as we acknowledge the fact that we’re a fashion company, which means we live on newness and basically raw consumption. We’d rather talk about acting responsibly and sharing those ambitions with consumers and stakeholders and going to work every day knowing that we’re making progress towards those goals”, says GANNI Founder Nicolaj Reffstrup. 

While GANNI insists on not branding itself sustainable, it has however more than earnt its reputation as a trailblazer in the area and Nicolaj Reffstrup is a member of Copenhagen Fashion Week’s sustainability advisory board.

This type of thinking – and acting – aligns with our values which is why GANNI and Polestar decided to team up during CPHFW.

“The GANNI DNA is very much about collaboration. Both internally and externally,” says Nicolaj Reffstrup.

For Polestar Head of Sustainability, Fredrika Klarén, teaming up with GANNI made perfect sense, “We’re very inspired by what the fashion industry has been able to achieve in the past decade; to come together in forums like this and discuss their sustainability challenges in an honest and constructive way. At Polestar, we believe that the automotive industry needs to move into that space as well in order to collaborate in a good way around our sustainability challenges.”

Apart from providing a number of Polestar 2 adorned with the GANNI logo to transport GANNI guests around the city, there was also a shared panel discussion examining the role of creative innovation in the green transition. As well as Nicolaj Reffstrup and Fredrika Klarén, the panel also included Marie Nipper, Director of Arken Museum for Modern Art and actress and activist Amelia Hoy. 

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Amelia Hoy, Fredrika Klarén, Marie Nipper and Nicolaj Reffstrup.

The discussion covered various industries’ sustainability issues from material choices, aesthetic durability as well as the importance of making products that remain relevant for customers to name but a few. 

“I attended the GANNI fashion show last night and was fascinated by the joy, colourfulness, diversity, explosion of aesthetics and different materials. It struck me that this is what sustainability needs to look like. We are yet to package sustainability in a way in which consumers can really act on these solutions”, says Fredrika Klarén. “It cannot be a burden to act more sustainably. It cannot be that you need to down-prioritise functions, safety, or aesthetics by choosing something that is more sustainable. That’s what we want to achieve at Polestar, making beautiful cars that are functional, safe but also sustainable.”

The panel's key take away was the importance of acknowledging that the fashion and automotive industry share the same complex sustainability challenges. To be successful in our quest for change, we need to see cross-industry collaborations, yielding for creative innovation. 

“Going through the green transition is a huge project that touches all aspects of running a business. This often starts with design which is driven by creative ideas and innovation. There’s nothing like collaboration when it comes to drawing out that creativity in you”, says Nicolaj Reffstrup.

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