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Title: How can the attitudes that Generation-Y hold towards the physical qualities of fast-fashion garments be understood and used to raise awareness and change current patterns of consumption?
Author: Yuille, Paul
ISNI:       0000 0004 9358 6150
Awarding Body: University of the Arts London
Current Institution: University of the Arts London
Date of Award: 2020
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The fast-fashion industry is overtly based on a business model that is driven by seasonal trends. These are much shorter than a traditional fashion season. Every month and in some cases twice a week, new stock is delivered into fast-fashion stores (Palomo-Lovinski & Hahn, 2014; Fung Global Retail & Technology, 2017). The model relies on rapid change of stock and novelty to generate new sales. The manufacturing process is largely the same for all fashion garments. This means that garments are being replaced and discarded before they are worn out (Brooks, 2015). The discarding of still functioning pieces is the consequence, prompting unnecessary production that harms the environment. As the fast-fashion phenomenon compels an even faster production and replenishment cycle (Levy & Weitz, 2008) at very cheap and ever decreasing price points (Mbonu, 2014), the opportunity for customers to purchase new garments is increased. Many fast-fashion brands actively encourage over consumption of garments (Rissanen, 2013). To date the majority of initiatives evident within fast-fashion that are cited as being sustainable, focus on switching the fibre for a more sustainable alternative (Fletcher & Grose 2012) or they consider the garments end of life and disposal (Brown 2013; DEFRA, 2010, 2011; Ellen Macarthur Foundation, 2017; WRAP 2012a). Fast-fashion consumers have long been regarded as impulsive and ignorant of the material aspects of the garments they buy (Kohrer & Schaffrin, 2016). There is limited published research relating to the attitudes of the consumers or of the garments being assessed by them prior to purchase or considering the current level of garment evaluation capabilities within this group (Eckman et al., 1990; Hugo & Van Aardt, 2012; Crommentuijn-Marsh, 2018). The ambition of this thesis is to access the consumer’s tacit knowledge (Gascoigne & Thornton, 2013) of the garments they buy so as to contribute to our understanding of the relatively untapped level of the consumers’ experiential knowledge of fast-fashion clothes. A series of studies were designed to access the knowledge of the Generation-Y consumer regarding the material aspects of fast-fashion dresses. The first interrogated the quality, price and lifetime indicators of a range of dresses through the eyes of the consumer. The respondents generated a list of traits that they believed would cause the dress to fail. A separate group tested these traits by wearing the same dresses until they failed. This research aims to draw attention to the consumers’ knowledge and existing consumption patterns so it can be incorporated with sustainability initiatives within fast-fashion.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Fashion Design & Marketing ; Fashion Marketing & Promotion