Down the catwalk with Absolut Trash for London Fashion Week

Marble LDN share their process behind Absolut's recyclable catwalk show.

Marble LDN was commissioned by John Doe Communications to create the first ever recycled runway at London Fashion Week, to drive awareness around Absolut’s limited edition recycled vodka bottle. Marble used rubbish from local bars, LFW parties, and 240kg of ocean waste to create a platform for up-and-coming sustainable designers to showcase their collections.

Background

With the fashion industry responsible for 10% of all carbon emissions, brands like Absolut recognised that change is needed. In order to commit to their sustainability terms, and to promote the release of their new limited edition vodka bottle - made of 41% recycled glass - Absolut commissioned John Doe Communications and Marble LDN to create the first ever recycled runway at London Fashion Week.

Strategy

With sustainability and the reduction of unnecessary waste at the front of our minds at Marble LDN, the Absolut Trash challenge was accepted with real enthusiasm. We avoided single use plastic throughout the production, using reclaimed wood and non-PVC vinyl, and repurposing rubbish from LFW for the set design, and also creating a purpose for the other production elements once the event was finished.

We were tasked with making the event 100% plastic free, which meant using recycled materials at every stage of the build and providing plastic alternatives for guests. In order to achieve this, we worked with our partners at Orca Sound Project because they provide a circular recycling solution, collecting ocean plastic and turning it into viable event solutions.

Process

The catwalk fascia was built using eight Orca boards, which equals 240kg plastic waste found on the beaches of the UK. The Absolut sign was created from the smashed up glass of 46 Absolut bottles, reminding the audience of the launch of the new limited edition bottle. The backdrop walls were created using repurposed shoes and dressed with the rubbish collected from the various catwalk backstage areas – this included plastic bottles, bags, hangers, cardboard boxes, leftover pieces of fabrics and accessories: anything that would have otherwise gone to waste!

There were four catwalk shows in total, which included the pioneering designers of sustainable fashion, such as Valentina Karellas, 10T Online, Bottle Top, Apollonia Studios, P.I.C. Style, Esfera, Cafin, Boita, Urban Trenches London, Labo Mono, Revival London, Elvis & Kresse. The event even aimed to connect consumers with sustainable fashion by inviting them to walk the runway themselves.

The result was astounding: with coverage on ITV news and positive feedback from all four shows, our recycled runway made the headlines and showcased the creativity of up-and-coming designers in an innovative way. Marble successfully recycled a total of quarter tonne of waste into a platform for showcasing sustainability; the first ever recycled runway at London Fashion Week, and hopefully the first of many.

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