Reincarnation Remedy

Designer: Harvee Kok Leong Vee

Client: Raffles Design Institute

Category: Life

The fashion and textile industry produce significant negative impacts on the environment. Every stage of the clothing life cycle creates potential environmental hazards including growing fibers, manufacturing, distribution, transportation, laundry service and finally ending in mountains of discarded clothes. Moreover, the pace of fashion trends in the past few decades has accelerated towards “fast fashion” that democratizing luxury by bringing fast changing trends with extremely affordable prices, leading to over consumptive purchasing behaviour and nurtured disposable fashion trend.

It is time to stop being so wasteful and consider the increasing dangers of global warming. People often cannot see how our realities are connected. As designer, I think that we need to be re-educated to understand those connections and able to rebuild what we have around us. We should take an initial step to integrate recycled practice into current fashion system in order to slow down breakneck speed of disposable fashion and looming shortage of raw materials.

“Reincarnation Remedy” was inspired by Chinese and Tibetan traditional medicine, Cordyceps Sinensis that reincarnate into precious herbal medicine after dead. The collection is a practical experiment of upcycling materials (pre-consumer, waste post-consumer waste and production waste) in to practice of one off pieces and small scale production. I believe good design is problem solving so that the collection can be a design model that minimize environmental impact and promote the broader use of upcycling in fashion industry.

With the concept of “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”, I integrated my previous practical experiences in fashion design and making upcycled collection by using left over materials from production house and second-hand clothing from flea market to extend their longevity and transform into value added brand new garment. The only new items used in the collection are thread, buttons, interfacing and zippers to ensure that the collection more cohesive and all the items can endure and sustain for longer period of time.

The collection emphasizes on the possibility to make clothing with a minimal environmental footprint in both one-off pieces and small-scale production. Some of the designs were perfectly lined to overcome hygiene problem of the second hand textiles that some customers are concerned about. There is no labels attach on all the garments to deliver a message to consumer that label name is not a priority and remind them to buy what they need instead of what they want. Some of the designs suitable for small-scale production due to the method cutting left over fabrics into smaller pieces as new textile manipulation to maximize usage of waste textile. I try to collage unexpected mixture of materials, structure and create visual identity/ identification of my name, caring about the collection coherency, consistency and continuity.

Reincarnation Remedy