Our goal at the festival is to represent designers who have incorporated sustainable practices in their activities. We also set an example ourselves by organizing the festival in line with sustainable practices. We are constantly evolving to become more sustainable by setting new goals both for ourselves and motivating our partners and designers to find and adopt environmentally friendly practices. With our activities, we want to set an example for the entire fashion industry on how to become more sustainable.

The support of Tartu 2024 the European Capital of Culture has allowed Estonian Fashion Festival to expand our sustainability program and has helped us to implement our goals and vision.


Estonian Fashion Festivali sustainability strategy


Our sustainability strategy includes social, environmental and economic goals. When organizing the festival, we follow the sustainability criteria and goals developed in our daily work. The activities of the participating designers focus on the development of sustainable practices, and in addition, the annual organizational side of the festival focuses on reducing the effects of the environment and climate, optimizing the consumption of resources and minimizing the generation of waste.

ORGANIZATION


Being aware of the significant environmental and social impact of the fashion industry, it is important for us to be not only a representative organization in the local fashion scene, but also an awareness raiser and exemplary event that brings important issues to the agenda and contributes significantly to the local fashion industry becoming more sustainable. In order to achieve these goals, we have agreed on common goals and activities, for which we developed a sustainability strategy in 2023. This includes social, environmental, economic and also cultural goals, and from 2024 the festival plans to report these results publicly. In addition, in the organization of the festival, we have in mind a sustainable guide for organizing the event.

DESIGNERS

The designers participating in our festival have been selected based on sustainability criteria. The rules for designers become more detailed year by year, and we support this shift with trainings, seminars and workshops aimed at helping designers become more sustainable. At the festival, we recognize the most sustainable designer in Estonia and, with the award, contribute to their activity and help them speed up the implementation of sustainable practices. As a fashion festival representing only sustainable Estonian designers, we have set ourselves the goal of becoming a considerable fashion festival representing sustainable designers in neighboring countries by 2026.

In 2022, Estonian Fashion Festival started a designers' sustainability pilot project, where designers applying to the festival's fashion shows could voluntarily answer 15 sustainability-related questions in an online form. In 2023, we further refined our sustainability criteria. For applicants to the 2024 shows, we have created a separate sustainability questionnaire containing 38 questions with different scores – designers must answer at least four of them to be admitted to a show. The questions cover six categories: strategy, design and production, packaging, social responsibility, transparency and customer relations and cultural sustainability.

Framework of criteria:
The sustainability requirements of Copenhagen Fashion Week 2022 and the self-assessment tool developed within the Fashion for Change (EU) project have been used in developing the sustainability criteria of the Estonian Fashion Festival. The claims take into account the Sustainable Development Goals as well as the EU Textile Strategy and the Sustainable Product Ecodesign Regulation.

FESTIVAL ORGANIZATION

We have developed environmentally friendly event management guidelines covering several areas: venue, production, construction, design, partners, communication, waste, publications, catering, dishes and gifts and souvenirs. The guidelines are aimed at the festival’s organizing team and all partners, and will be applied at all venues of the fashion festival.