FEB 2021: Project Development Update

Dear community,

Here at Zero Waste Design Online we (Mylène, Cass, Danielle and Holly) believe that transparency and building commons are vital. They have an important role to play in the future of social, environmental and economic progress and innovation. We also believe in the importance of providing a space for open dialogue in order to collectively transform our ways of thinking, designing, making, and being in the world.

So, today we’d like to share with you some more information about the ZWDO development process and explain to you how we work together, what the different stages are that we have been going through as a newborn international organisation, and what goes on in our team meetings. We’re excited to open up the process and give you an overview of where we are currently, where we want to go next and how we intend to achieve this community’s collective ambition!

For now we’ve chosen a monthly blog post format so we have enough space to fully document our experiences. So please - grab a tea or coffee, take a moment to slow down and come along with us on this whirlwind learning journey.

What you’re about to read is a compilation of our Co-founders thoughts, this month written by Mylène. Feel free to comment and share your thoughts at the bottom of this page - we always welcome feedback from the community!

Reflecting on 2020

“I feel like 2020 was kind of a crash test period for ZWDO. Only after a few Zoom calls we decided on a new journey together with a clear ambition of where we want to go. To collectively transform the textile industry through open dialogue around garment construction, pattern cutting, design methods and innovative use of technology.” - Mylène


Before ZWDO, we didn’t know each other properly. Holly and Cass were already friends, Danielle and I met once when she lived in London but we didn’t know how this group would work on a short/mid/long term basis.

And yet still our collective aim was obviously clear.

But then came questions: how do we do this, where should we start from? Knowing how complex the industry is, and the little funds and time we have available, we realised there would be a lot of learning as the project evolved.

Committed to creating change, we started to meet once a week on Thursday nights, 2 hours from 7pm to 9pm CET. (That’s the best time slot we’ve found considering Danielle lives now in Portland, 9 hours difference!) We spent our first meeting talking about our experiences, our individual visions, trying to structure a collective manifesto, what we want to offer, how we would communicate about this project publicly and trying also to figure out what could be achievable within the limited time each of us has.

Though our lives were quite busy, and despite the global pandemic, in a 5 month window (Aug - Dec) we’ve managed to test a fair few aspects of the project:

  • Hosted 4 online workshops

  • Hosted 3 community calls

  • Found a temporary way to host the collective funds (Open Collective)