PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to examine what the term sustainable fashion means from the perspective of micro-organisations, experts, and consumers.Design/methodology/approachThis research is qualitative in nature, utilising a multi-methods case study approach (semi-structured interviews, semiotics, questionnaires). Grounded analysis was applied to analyse the data.FindingsFindings indicate that interpretation of sustainable fashion is context and person dependent. A matrix of key criteria provides the opportunity to find common elements.Research limitations/implicationsDue to the nature of this research the sample size is limited and may not be generalised. Data were collected in the UK and are limited to a geographical region.Practical implicationsAn important implication is that defining sustainable fashion is vital in order to avoid challenges, such as greenwashing, which were faced in other industries that have a longer history in sustainable practices. Micro-organisations should take advantage of identifying key sustainable fashion criteria, which will enable them to promote their fashion collections more effectively.Social implicationsThe criteria identified provide assurance for consumers that sustainable fashion is produced with social aspects in mind (fair wages, good working conditions).Originality/valueThe paper proposes a matrix that allows micro-organisations to clearly identify their collections as sustainable.
Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 12, 2016