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Looking To Become A Conscious Fashion Designer? Learn How Today!

Updated: Feb 4

2 people in pastel clothes with a bubble around their head
Become a Conscious Creator

The fashion industry is continuosly evolving and must keep

striving towards better, greener methods. The industry has always responded to consumer behavior, ultimately leading to the rise of fast fashion. But today's consumers are starting to step back and look at the environmental impact of their behavior. That's where conscious fashion comes in and why you must learn Conscious Fashion Design and implement these key steps into your work and business practices.

While it's not a new niche, conscious fashion is rising as consumers look for an antidote to fast fashion. This more ethical approach to fashion promotes sustainable manufacturing that minimizes the impact on the plant. Conscious fashion strives to achieve a carbon-neutral industry, from fabric sourcing to designing and delivery. Whether you are currently a student, and entrepreneur or working in the industry, you can make a difference by learning how to design and develop product consciously.

Garment Rack with natural materials clothing
Garment Rack with natural materials clothing

This eco-conscious and ethical way of making product must become a priority as we consider the health & future of people and the planet. Now is the time to implement change, whether sustainable fashion is your passion or you want to pivot your brand to become eco-friendly. So how can you Learn Conscious Fashion Design?

Girl in white summer dress with a round wicker handbag
Natural wicker hand bag

What is Conscious Design?

Conscious design – also known as 'eco-friendly fashion' and 'slow fashion'– focuses on making clothes with as minimal impact on the environment as possible. These designs strive to be carbon-neutral with ethical manufacturing. 

There are many ways that a brand can implement conscious design fairly easily, including:

  • Upcycling waste materials and products to use in your products, such as fishing nets, and fabric scraps and found trims.

  • Hand making or producing collections in small batches and made to order to minimize waste.

  • Ignoring here-today-gone-tomorrow trends, instead developing a brand identity with timeless quality designs.

  • Using organic fabrics and materials that are naturally biodegradable.

  • Offering buy-back and exchange programs for customers to recycle older pieces instead of sending them to landfill. 

Conscious fashion is about more than just the design process. It also considers the people and communities involved and impacted by the fashion industry. These brands aim to promote ethical fashion, including looking at the full life cycle, paying garment workers a living wage and safe working conditions. Many slow fashion brands work to receive a fair-trade certification and other environmental classifications. 

Artisans embroidering a design
Artisans Embroidering

Why Should Fashion Designers Care About Conscious Design?

Fashion designers should care about conscious design as it is vital for our planet's future. Clothing production accounts for 10% of carbon emissions and almost 20% of wastewater. The industry uses more energy than both the aviation and shipping sectors combined. Organizations like the United Nations, who has stepped in to promote a shift to sustainable fashion to combat climate change.

Stack of Denim Jeans
Denim Jeans

It takes 10,000 liters of water to grow one kilo of cotton, the average needed to make one pair of denim jeans. By comparison, it takes one person ten years to drink the same amount of water. Only 3% of the world's water is freshwater, with over 1.1 billion people needing access to water.

Pollution smoke stacks NYC
Pollution NYC

The fashion industry is actively polluting our rivers, contributing to water scarcity, and is a significant player in greenhouse gas emissions. Many fast fashion garments also shed microplastics while being washed, which inevitably end up in our oceans.

The need to switch from fast to slow fashion is evident when you look at what's happening in landfills. 85% of textiles end up in landfills or are incinerated. Most of these garments will have never been worn. Every 16 seconds, clothing equivalent to the height of the Eiffel Tower is thrown into landfills.

Circular fashion infographic
Circular fashion system

Circular fashion presents us with an opportunity to change this. Conscious fashion designers and their company teams are at the forefront of the opportunity for an environmental revolution.

2 fashion designers working at a desk
Designers Working Together

The Future of Conscious Fashion

The future of conscious fashion looks bright, thanks to Gen Z and millennials ready to talk with their wallets. As young generations, naturally more eco-conscious, become financially stable, they increasingly support sustainable brands over fast fashion. Consumers are actively looking for brands that reflect their values, including those that pay a fair wage, have low water usage, and use organic materials. 

Fashion designers who want to attract private investment can leverage demand for conscious fashion to secure investment from like-minded investors and portfolio funds. This is a largely untapped market, as research shows traditional brands need to catch up consumers' sustainability expectations.

Gen Z and millennials have an increased influence on older generations, with research showing a 25% increase in Gen X consumers shopping for sustainable brands. The demographic also saw a 42% increase in those willing to pay more for sustainable products. 

By 2030, Gen Z will represent almost 30% of the world's income, making them a significant player in the fashion industry. Brands and designers who tap into conscious fashion early can get ahead of the game and build their brand identity as a slow fashion label.

Person on computer working on a fashion design
Online Design Work


Tips to become a conscious design industry pro

As a conscious fashion designer, you'll need to think beyond just aesthetics and consider the impact of your designs on the environment, society, and the people involved in the production process. Here are some tips to help you build a successful career, business and products as a conscious fashion design industry pro:

  1. Educate yourself: Research about sustainable fashion practices, materials, and techniques. Read up on the environmental and social impacts of the fashion industry and learn about the alternatives to fast fashion.

  2. Design Consciously: Use eco-friendly materials, natural dyes, and recyclable fabrics to create your designs. Consider designing timeless pieces that can be worn for many years, as opposed to trends that go out of style quickly.

  3. Be transparent: Share information about your production processes, materials, and suppliers with your customers. This will help build trust and loyalty with them, knowing that you are doing your best to create sustainable and ethical products. Read about Fashion Transparency from Fashion Revolution

  4. Collaborate with other conscious designers: Build a community of like-minded designers who share your values and collaborate with them to create a more sustainable fashion industry. Learn about successful collaborations here

  5. Stay up-to-date with industry trends: Follow sustainable fashion blogs, attend industry events, and keep up-to-date with the latest sustainable fashion news. This will help you stay informed about new trends and innovations in sustainable fashion.

  6. Practice responsible business practices: Use renewable energy, minimize waste, and reduce your carbon footprint as much as possible. Also, treat your employees fairly and ensure that they are working under safe and ethical conditions.

  7. Spread awareness: Use your platform as a fashion pro to raise awareness about the importance of sustainable fashion and the impact of the fashion industry on the environment and society.

  8. Join The Ultimate Fashion Design & Development Roadmap Course: A Master Class on Navigating the Fashion Design Process and Achieving Conscious Design. In this one of a kind design course, you will work through a comprehensive process, from business start up, to defining your brands vision and purpose, to financing, to design and development of products to production, branding, joining the mastermind group and more.

What is the Ultimate Design and Development Roadmap course? Who is it for and what will you learn?

In this live 3-month online course, you will navigate the fashion design process to create work with purpose that leads to positive impact with industry experts. We've curated this course with small and independent designers in mind, helping you achieve your personal and professional goals while finding your voice in the competitive fashion industry.

To master Conscious Fashion Design, this course is structured as a 10-module roadmap, breaking down in nitty gritty detail. We'll help you understand the industry's current problems, teach you how to set up a sustainable fashion business, and navigate the design process from concept to consumer.  This course includes the actual design and development process, but is so much more than that. We will walk you through setting your values, build a business foundation, including how to finance and become investor ready, sourcing and working with ethical makers. Together with your industry expert guides & fellow students, you will build your processes, products and business and celebrate your work along with fellow students at your "graduation" party.

Conscious Fashion Design Course Curriculum Guide

The course comprises 10 segments:

  1. Understanding the fashion industry and its impact

  2. Identifying personal values and beliefs for conscious fashion design

  3. Setting up a sustainable fashion business

  4. Building a circularity model for fashion

  5. Implementing conscious design principles in fashion

  6. Navigating the fashion design and development process: from concept to consumer (see our D&D Roadmap checklist here)

  7. Research and incorporating sustainable materials and processes

  8. Sourcing for production and working with ethical manufacturers

  9. Establishing a conscious fashion brand identity

  10. Becoming investor ready for a conscious fashion brand

Why You Should Join The Ultimate Design and Development Roadmap Course:

Ultimate Design and Development Roadmap coursisn't your typical online course such as "6 months to launch your fashion line". This course is taught by instructors from top design schools & prestigious brands, giving you access to years of expert knowledge and experience, along with a wealth of resources from our design hub, not to mention expanding your network with these industry pros.

In addition to your course material, you'll get access to:

  • The IFD Conscious Fashion Academy video library with the recorded sustainable and ethical fashion lessons.

  • 22 Sessions of Live classes with interactive Q&A sessions led by mentors and industry leaders offering personalized career advice.

  • Our community platform as an IFD insider connects you with other like-minded fashion professionals on the same journey as you. 

  • Support from the IFD team through email and one-on-one consulting session to help you implement what you learn during your 3-month course.

  • The Conscious Fashion Library, an extensive resource hub designed to give you the tools and knowledge to excel in the fashion industry while remaining true to your values. 

  •  Plus Bonuses!!!:  Certification, opportunity to present your work & share your brand story, and a "Brand Bible" of your own to guide you through your future products and processes

This online course is designed for anyone interested in conscious fashion design, whether you're an established designer looking to pivot into the niche or a first-time designer starting your journey. There's no needed prior knowledge and we will provide additional resources needed to guide you along the course.

We are looking for Beta-testers!!

For our inaugural course starting the end of February, we're offering an exclusive discount rate for beta testers to try our course before it's provided to the public. Once our beta testing program closes, the cost will increase and will remain as the regularly priced course.

Learn Grow Connect with The Conscious Fashion Design Academy graphic
Learn Grow Connect with The Conscious Fashion Design Academy

Request info today for a chance to get a free $500 Course Add-On.

You'll qualify for our 'fast action bonus':  You'll get our $500 'One on One Fashion Mentor session' for free as part of your online course. You'll also qualify to be featured on Inside Fashion Design, allowing you to promote your brand, services and story. Qualifying students will also get a lifetime membership to the 'Conscious Fashion Design Master Minds program. 

FAQs about the 'The Ultimate Fashion Design & Development Roadmap Course: A Master Class on Navigating the Fashion Design Process and Achieving Conscious Design'

Who is the course designed for?

The course is designed for small fashion designers, to industry professionals interested in sustainable and conscious design. It provides a roadmap for developing your business, designing product and marketing a sustainable fashion brand including sourcing eco-friendly materials and implementing conscious design principles.  

What is covered in the online course?

This program is a 3-month online course that covers 10 modules/22 sessions. You'll also get access to a wealth of knowledge, resources, and industry experts during your course. This roadmap-style course covers everything from understanding the fashion industry's environmental impact to creating a conscious fashion brand identity and working with ethical manufacturers. Check out our infographic above

Design student and community graphic
Design Student

How can I become a beta tester for the 'The Ultimate Fashion Design & Development Roadmap Course: A Master Class on Navigating the Fashion Design Process and Achieving Conscious Design Course?

Click the link below to receive more information.

As a beta tester, you'll help us fine-tune our conscious fashion design course before it hits the public market. We'll use your feedback for this and future Inside Fashion Design courses. Our beta testing program is only open for a limited time, with applications considered on a first-come-first-served basis.

The next step in your fashion career starts here!

Want a Free Conscious Fashion Design & Development Checklist? Request here and we will send you a link!

Thanks for reading today and caring about Conscious Fashion Design!

Have questions? Inquires? Interesting in collaborations and story sharing? Send a note:

Britta Cabanos seated in gold outfit.jpg


Hey there, lovely fashion friends! My name is Britta Cabanos, and I'm thrilled to have you here! 


I'm a 25+ year fashion industry design professional, and I'm passionate about supporting conscious designers, ethical makers, and sustainability. I believe that fashion can be a powerful force for good, and I'm committed to helping aspiring fashion industry pros make their mark in this exciting and ever-changing field. 


If you share my passion for conscious fashion and sustainability,  then you're in the right place. I offer industry insights, mentorship, connections, and resources to help you achieve your goals and make a positive impact in the world. Let's connect and explore the possibilities together - are you ready to join me on this exciting journey?

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Thanks for joining us!

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