The Wool Express with Alexander Stutterheim
Sometimes, speeding things up requires slowing down. As we’ve said before, the change to greater sustainability needs to happen more quickly. This can be achieved, paradoxically, by taking a slower approach. Designing timeless products to have a longer life cycle will reduce consumption and prolong a product’s usability, whether in automotive or in fashion. Something Alexander Stutterheim understands better than most.
Creative director, fashion designer, and founder of both the eponymous raincoat brand and knitwear brand John Sterner (named for his grandfather, whose raincoat was a catalyst for Stutterheim’s career change from copywriting to fashion), Stutterheim places a premium on “slow fashion”: locally sourced materials, timeless design, respect for the environment, and more mindful consumption. “We’re trying to be an open, holistic brand,” he says of his eco-luxury knitwear line, “one that challenges the mass production industry’s values.”
Stutterheim keeps a small flock of sheep a short distance from his “flagsheep store” on the Swedish island of Öland. It’s from these sheep that he gets the wool for his heavy knit series, keeping a close eye on the entire process. A small scale and slow pace (compared to much of the contemporary clothing industry) allows for greater attention to detail, something as important to Stutterheim professionally as it is personally. “Were he alive today, my grandfather would say we live too fast,” he claims. “Too fast to appreciate life. We’re opting to deliberately miss the beauty and nuances of true emotion.”
This appreciation for detail, for timelessness, and for greater sustainability is what led Stutterheim to Polestar in the first place. Looking for a less environmentally unfriendly method to deliver products to customers, he approached Polestar with the intention of using a Polestar 2 for his “Wool Express” (or “Ullexpressen” in Swedish). Learn more about Stutterheim’s approach, his projects, and the wool express, above.
Design Towards Zero Award Winners: Werewool
Werewool’s textile innovation and sustainable technology has the potential to revolutionise the clothing industry. With a new class of protein-based biodegradable textile fibres, the textile industry's dependence on extractive raw materials, harmful dyes, and plastics can be broken.