Zero Waste Fashion Competition: Meet the Winners

This summer, in partnership with Leeds City Council and Zero Waste Leeds, we asked fashion designers based in Leeds City Region to submit their designs and explain how they were ‘zero waste’. We had a fantastic response that showcased the breadth and depth of design talent and innovation in this region.

The winners, as judged by Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT, received fashion photoshoots with 360-degree product photography to support their businesses online. We are thrilled to share some of these images.

Upcycle Fashion 

Knee-length dress of denim panels by Upcycle Fashion

Julia Roebuck was the winner with her business Upcycle Fashion, receiving a full-day photoshoot in which she experimented with the 360-degree format to illustrate her creative process as part of her educational work. 

Upcycle Fashion runs workshops for schools and communities demonstrating how the lives of garments and accessories can be extended by turning them into new pieces. Using the example of a skirt made from pre-owned silk ties, her images tell the story of an upcycled garment.

Rotating slideshow of Upcycle Fashion skirt being constructed from old silk ties
Julia Roebuck shows how she produced this unique skirt

Julia presented some of her product spins at an event hosted by the University of Leeds in partnership with the Knowledge Transfer Network last month, where she spoke about raising public awareness and understanding of upcycling and sustainable fashion.

Josefin Wanner 

Long-sleeved white v-neck blouse and dark grey pencil skirt by Josefin Wanner

Runner-up Josefin Wanner received a half-day photoshoot, working both with a live model and a mannequin to showcase her upcoming collection. All Josefin’s pieces are upcycled from second-hand clothes and fabrics; even the thread and buttons used to bring her garments together are either donated or second-hand, creating beautiful unique sustainable garments.

Long-sleeved white and blue crop top and skirt by Josefin Wanner

Josefin has just launched her latest collection, with the still images and product spins from this photoshoot at the core of her marketing campaign. As well as being used on her own online store, the images are attracting lots of attention on her social media channels and will appear in future marketing materials too.

Cunnington & Sanderson 

White midi dress with black print by Cunnington & Sanderson

Cunnington & Sanderson were our Director’s Choice winners, receiving a half-day photoshoot which has proved a valuable addition to their online marketing toolkit. The design duo are part of The 100 Project, a collaboration between Not Just A Label and international wholesale platform JOOR which enables up-and-coming designers to access a new global business-to-business (B2B) audience of over 200,000 buyers alongside world-leading design brands. 

Images from our photoshoot have enabled Cunnington & Sanderson to build their online profile on JOOR, showcasing their sustainable collections to a wide range of luxury retailers. In addition, the photography has proved to be a conversation starter on social media and helpful in communicating with manufacturers, stylists and magazine editors. 

Using sustainable materials, including cloth from local mills in Yorkshire, Cunnington & Sanderson take an innovative approach to zero-waste luxury design. Pieces are made from a single complete piece of fabric, which is then draped to produce a unique silhouette. 

Black strappy dress by Cunnington & Sanderson

Cunnington & Sanderson have also used the images to present their techniques in Zero Waste Draping Workshops for fashion students at the University of Leeds and University of Chester, preparing the next generation of designers to drape on the mannequin, make a zero-waste garment pattern, and construct a zero-waste garment structure. 

Thank you to everyone who entered the competition, as well as to Adam Mansell for judging the winner and runner-up.