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Art & Design

Zero Waste Daniel: a new sustainable fashion icon

Hey everyone! This is Melisa from CICLO and today I would like to introduce a very sustainable fashion designer all the way from New York, U.S.A, known as Zero Waste Daniel. He is working to reduce his carbon footprint by utilizing leftover clothing material and giving them a new and unique eye-catching and sustainable cool factor! He believes that the current fashion industry norms need to be changed using new and creative designs which sends nothing to the landfills. Keep reading to learn more about his story…

A systematic fashion problem.


Photo by Zero Waste Daniel

Daniel Silverstein began his career by working as a temp assistant sweater designer where he learned a lot about the current fashion industry. During this time he had the opportunity to sit in on a meeting and learned just how much textile material was wasted for making a single sweater. Only 47% of the fabric was used while 53% of it was wasted. He was appalled by this information and felt like he was contributing to a systemic problem. After this eye-opening event, he decided to take action and something about it. This is how Zero Waste Daniel was born.


Photo by Zero Waste Daniel

Zero Waste Daniel began designing unisex basics such as hoodies, t-shirts, sweatpants in 2016. All of his products are made and designed in-house using pre-consumer textile waste obtained from nearby production factories and cutting room scraps. His items are all unique and no two items are the same. He handmakes each clothing piece using several different small pieces of textile to create a single large piece of fabric. From there he continues by making a final larger cut or places it onto a larger piece of fabric to add design and color. You can even ask for an item to be custom-made to fit you! Each piece of clothing produced stops at least 1 pound (0.45 kg) of textile waste from going to the landfill. In 2017, his story went viral and more than 20 million viewers saw his interviews done with NOW THIS, INSIDER, MASHABLE and BUZZFEED. See one of his interviews below!


Limited Edition Earth Day 2019 Jacket- Photo by Zero Waste Daniel


Zero-waste fashion and lifestyle role model

Textile waste is a huge problem in our current fashion industry. Over 31 kilograms of textiles per person in the U.S. alone are going to the landfill every year. Daniel has reduced this number to zero. He has also mastered the process of large and small scale clothes production without having textile by-products go to waste. This process is now being introduced to other fashion designers such as MIAKODA, VESTMENTS and EILEEN FISHER. Like his clothes, Daniel follows a zero-waste lifestyle in his studio as well as at home. He uses recycled materials for shipping, packaging and office goods. He also tries to reduce trash as much as possible by bringing his own tote bag stuffed with reusable utensils, mason jars and cloth napkins.


Photo by Zero Waste Daniel

Zero Waste Daniel is a trendy, hip and sustainable fashion movement which he hopes will influence a change to the current fashion industry norms. To learn more about Daniel and his brand ZWD, please visit his site below!

Next time you go on a shopping spree, think consciously and say “Who made my clothes?” or “How much materials were wasted to make this single t-shirt?” If we are able to think more carefully about the businesses and industries we support, we can make sustainable choices as consumers. Thanks for reading! See you again soon!

Top photo by Zoe Smythe

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  1. August 10th, 2019

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