A Look At COP28: What’s Next for Fashion?

A Look At COP28: What’s Next for Fashion?

The rising global temperatures and growing awareness of environmental and social impacts are starting to make it feel like we're running out of time. However, the topic “Pioneering Fashion Sustainability” was present at COP28, the U.N.’s annual climate summit, and brought the movers and shakers of fashion together to brainstorm ways to save the planet from carbon emissions and the ticking climate clock.

According to Federico Marchetti, founder of Yoox Net-a-porter and chair of the Fashion Task Force under King Charles III’s Sustainable Market Initiative, addressing the fashion industry's environmental impact is more crucial than ever. “We are an industry responsible for anywhere from 4 to 8 percent of the emissions in the world, depending on what study you are quoting. We are polluting more than planes are. This is not an opportunity to use for marketing. It’s a question of survival.”

The conversations took place in Dubai from Nov. 30 to Dec. 13, 2023. Some influential fashion leaders leading the conversations included Stella McCartney, Ellen MacArthur, and organizations like Fashion Revolution and Global Fashion Agenda. 

Although the summit's outcome suggested that progress will be slow and insufficient in tackling climate change, the fashion industry has taken a proactive approach to highlight real-time solutions. By promoting rental and resale options, the industry encourages consumers to embrace a "newness" without contributing to the overconsumption problem. In addition, durable products, innovative materials, and taking responsibility for the lifecycle of a product are also being prioritized by brands to combat climate change.

We walked away from COP28 with a list of key takeaways regarding sustainable fashion solutions, and we recommend reading Harper’s Bazaar and WWD to learn more. As a company supporting a circular model within the luxury industry, here’s what stuck out to us about the future of fashion and its impact.


Over 50 percent of our clothing is made from polyester derived from oil. Unfortunately, the fashion industry has become overly reliant on fossil fuels to manufacture clothes. To address this dependence, the Fossil Fuel Fashion campaign aims to raise awareness of available alternatives and promote sustainable production practices. This is a vital step in mitigating the impact of climate change and improving the material composition of our clothing.


Material science brand Pangaia and the Trillion Bees coalition are leading a new campaign called “Bee The Change,” which aims to raise awareness about the relationship between clothing, biodiversity, and pollinators. By highlighting the direct impact of fashion on pollinators, such as habitat loss, pesticides, and climate change, the campaign hopes to protect these vital species. With the fashion industry increasingly embracing nature-inspired collections, seeing more global brands joining the cause is encouraging.


Stella McCartney, known for its innovative approach to materials, unveiled its new Sustainable Market at COP28. The market features groundbreaking materials such as grape-based leather and tree-cellulose sequins. As more brands adopt these new-gen alternatives to traditional materials, customers can expect to see even more exciting innovations in the future.


Sustainability is more than just a fleeting trend but a way of life that promotes genuine connections and fosters diverse perspectives. Sam Pattison's cultural sustainability organization, Black Pearl, recently hosted discussions at the COP28 Entertainment + Culture pavilion, featuring activists, the African Biodiversity Network, and Ellie Goulding. These discussions showcased the power of fashion, music, and culture in connecting with audiences worldwide on climate change through personalized storytelling, relatable impact, and inspiring voices from the Global South.


Focusing on building a community and encouraging citizen engagement is more important than ever. Customers should be able to see their values and beliefs reflected in the brands and businesses they support. It's essential to prioritize community involvement and create opportunities for customers to become active members.

As the year comes to a close, we want to express our gratitude to our community of borrowers and lenders who have supported us in our mission to make a difference. We eagerly anticipate 2024 and are excited to witness the growth and prosperity of the takeaways from COP28 in the fashion industry's change-making communities.

-As always, elevate your wardrobe with respected fashion and embrace the shift in style