Broadening Luxury through Sustainability: Cases from Craft-based Fashion

  • Na, Yuri (Dept. of Craft Design, Keimyung University)
  • Received : 2018.09.27
  • Accepted : 2018.12.08
  • Published : 2018.12.30


Sustainability is an important topic within a variety of design areas, including fashion. The 'fast fashion' behavior of consumers is one of the big challenges that sustainable living faces. For the fashion industry, sustainability can be seen as a regulating ethos for higher quality and longer-lasting products, which I argue as embodying an intersection between sustainability and luxury. This study establishes a conceptual model for 'sustainable luxury' that can be implemented as a guide in the fashion design industry and education field. This paper will focus particularly on craft-based fashion within the industry. Through conceptual analysis and case studies, I analyze sustainable luxury through the scope of Soper's (2007) 'alternative hedonism', linking hedonic and selfidentity values as a foundation for the acceptance of and continued drive toward more sustainable luxury products. Unlike other studies which only emphasize the ecological and environmental aspects of sustainability, viz. green/eco design, this study explores sustainability as balanced with its four dimensions: environmental, economic, social, and cultural. Case studies will exemplify this redefined notion of sustainable luxury.

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Figure 1. Luxury values that influence individual value (Wiedmann et al., 2017)

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Figure 3. The balanced dimensions of sustainability supporting sustainable luxury items

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Figure 2. (a) Co-crafting workshop, Helsinki, August 17, 2013; (b) Probe - personal journals designed by the researcher; (c) Probe – completed personal journals by participants, January 15, 2014.


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