The London College of Fashion (LCF), University of the Arts London (UAL) students recently presented their groundbreaking use of blockchain technology in a handloom craft showcase in collaboration with Selyn, Sri Lanka’s pioneer in fair trade handloom manufacture.
The launch event, held at the exclusive SOOK 42 South Molton Street in London, aimed to celebrate the immense potential of global crafts and the innovative role of future creatives.
The showcase featured a modern and stylish bag designed in a collaborative project between London College of Fashion and Selyn called the “Sandra” Clapping Bag. Over 25 LCF students were tasked with redefining the use and potential of handloom textiles to create a product that appeals to a global consumer with blockchain technology. The students were successful in creating a fully transparent and sustainable accessory, showcasing the future of ethical and sustainable fashion.
Dr Emmanuel Sirimal Silva, Interim Director Fashion Business Research at London College of Fashion, UAL, stated, “Such unique and collaborative experiences are core to the development of our students; it allows them to challenge the industry and prove that better ways to create and manufacture are possible.”
The partnership between UAL, Selyn, and PaperTale Sweden is a “first” on multiple levels. “A first for LCF/UAL to engage directly with the value chain and blockchain technology, a first for Sri Lanka and the handloom sector to collaborate directly with these talented students, and a first for a model of equal partnership and collaboration – a way forward to rewrite how we work between the global North and South,” said Selyna Peiris, Selyn Director.
The exhibition showcased unique and exclusive textiles ideal for home, lifestyle, and fashion products for the conscious creative. All textiles were organic, fair trade, vegan, and cruelty-free, handmade by local artisans supporting and inspiring communities around Sri Lanka.
Visitors to the launch event were able to scan an NFC tag to see the impact and transparency of the production process, including the fibre and dyeing process, the artisan who wove the textiles, and the impact on communities and the environment. This initiative was made possible through the partnership with PaperTale, a blockchain technology company that maximizes transparency and traceability in the production process.