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Case

Pas Normal Studios:
How to Ride Circular in a Linear Industry

Sportswear brand Pas Normal Studios has the ambition to ride greener. Sowing several small seeds internally, have proven to be a fruitful strategy when operating in the historically linear fashion industry

The Results: Sow small seeds and aim for the snowball effect

12 new collections a year. And some products are only “in” for six months – then they’re out of date. That’s the reality for Pas Normal Studios working in the fast fashion industry. It’s a systemic problem, coming both from the industry and the consumers’ expectations, which are fed by the industry. Nevertheless, the Copenhagen-based company insists on carrying out a circular transition – by sowing small seeds and aiming for the snowball effect.

As of now, the company is:

  • Repairing returned products
  • Developing guidelines for material choice
  • Developing the storytelling around the company’s journey towards circularity
  • Increasing the brand’s transparency

The sustainability team is also working on the internal lines of the company. They know the important aspects of introducing sustainability actions and narratives in an established company and brand: “We are at the point now where, as we are growing so quickly, we need to get this culture in the company now, otherwise it’s going to be too late,” says Charles H. Clarke, Social and Environmental Impact Lead at Pas Normal Studios in the survey.

He underlines the importance of even small but visible changes at the office:

“Even if it’s just something like getting a new recycling bin - that’s something small, but it’s very visual and then suddenly the culture shifts slightly”

Charles H. Clarke

Social and Environmental Impact Lead, Pas Normal Studios

The Challenge: Being a circular company in a linear industry

The global fashion industry is known as a linear industry, generating a lot of greenhouse gases due to the energy and materials used during its production, manufacturing, and transportation of the millions of garments purchased each year.

In the survey, we present four key insights from Charles’ experiences. They tell us about some of the challenges he and the company are facing:

  1. The lack of visibility downstream
  2. Developing the internal culture
  3. Managing a quick growth
  4. Navigating a linear ecosystem

You can dive deeper into the insights in the survey.

About Pas Normal Studios

Pas Normal Studios is a Copenhagen-based brand of contemporary, technical cycling clothing. The concept of Pas Normal Studios is to create technically perfect apparel, combined with visionary aesthetics. Through innovative designs, brand collaborations, and sourcing of new production methods, Pas Normal Studios strives to bring out collections that define modern cycling in a different context.

Number of employees: 15
Founded in: 2016

The Approach: Circular and tailored

For Pas Normal Studios, working with circularity means standing at the intersection of internal and external actors. On one hand, they’re creating the cultural foundations of a circular company internally. For example, the employees are co-creating sustainability-related goals: “They [the employees] decided on the goals, they were motivated to reach them and now we’re working towards  them, which is really cool,” says Charles.

On the other hand, Charles and the brand are challenging a whole industry that is traditionally linear. Pas Normal Studios work closely with other competing brands in the cycling apparel field to change that. They are brought together by the NGO Shift Cycling Culture.

“I don’t think you’d have a competitive advantage if you had a recycled zipper, compared to your competitors. So why don’t we all just do it? Everyone wins"

Charles H. Clarke

Social and Environmental Impact Lead, Pas Normal Studios

Besides working strategically with circularity, the brand has also participated in a course with us under our Green Circular Transition project with a focus on creating a more circular business model.

What can you do

If you want to create a more circular business model, try our circular toolkit. The toolkit can help any company or organization, any size, create a better business.

Download the user survey here

Gry Brostrøm

Senior Project Manager

Mail gry@ddc.dk
Phone +45 3115 8670
Social LinkedIn

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