Designing with the Environment in Mind Makes Fiona #oldnavyproud

by Kelby Smith, Product Communications Manager

Old Navy

June 5, 2019

While today is World Environment Day, our Old Navy Design Team is incorporating sustainable practices in their work every day with something called Conscious Design. It's an approach to design created from an awareness of the consequences and impact that our designs have. Did you know that 83% of apparel products end up in the landfill in the U.S. today? Conscious Design allows our designers to create more sustainable products – regenerating products and materials, selecting more sustainable materials, designing products with end-of-life in mind (hello, recyclability) – designing into sustainability.

At Old Navy, our designers can connect Conscious Design Principles to their everyday by focusing on:

  • Reducing samples, using recycled content and reducing packaging.
  • Building circularity into the retail and customer experience in fun ways (showing consumers what can be done with recycled fiber).
  • Designing clothes that are truly durable and can be worn longer.
  • Leveraging solutions like using sustainable (or BCI) cotton, recycled tape, and wash processes that use less water.

Some of our designers recently participated in a Conscious Design workshop where they learned about our impact and influence on the environment – as an industry, as a large retailer, and as designers – and how to incorporate sustainable practices into our design processes.

Fiona Galloway, Senior Designer of Male Active, is one of the passionate designers who participated in the workshop. When we sat down with her to learn what makes her #oldnavyproud, she also shared how Conscious Design shapes her work.

What is your role at Old Navy?
As a Senior Designer on the Male Active team working on both Adult and Boys, I help design and manage the product design cycle from concept to completion.

What makes you proud to work here?
I love that we can reach so many people. I work with an amazing team of talented designers who pride themselves on designing the best product out there. I’m also proud of our commitment to sustainability and positively influencing future generations.

What’s the best part about being on your team?
The product we design has such a wide scope, from tees to outerwear in a range of fabrications and technologies. We create a vision of the line through clear storytelling and execution.

What is your biggest goal for 2019?
To see all the guys in our café wearing Old Navy Active! I love seeing people wear our product!

What does Conscious Design mean to you?
Conscious Design is designing every detail with intent and a purpose – from the sketch, to the fabric, to the trim, even to how it’s built. All elements are equally important.

How are the few who attended the workshop making Conscious Design a regular practice across the entire team?
I heard so many great ideas from other categories about their goals for sustainability in design! Denim is looking at controlling water waste and using recyclable trims for hardware which I think is awesome!

Will Conscious Design ever alter the quality, look, or feel of our products?
Activewear as it stands is really advance in protecting the environment. Great efforts have already been made in developing new fabrics and trims, so we are in the right place at the right time.

What is the biggest learning you took away from the workshop that you’ve started incorporating into your own work?
I learned you can lead by example, especially in the workplace. We have been doing more things digitally, recycling color chips and looking at ways to avoid unsustainable fibers and chemicals.

 

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