Sustainable Fashion MA student Caroline Garland attends the Global Fashion Summit for The Independent

25 June 2024

A woman smiling while holding a book
Caroline Garland 2
Type: Text
Category: Student stories

Caroline Garland is a writer and aspiring fashion journalist. As a student on Falmouth’s online master’s in Sustainable Fashion, she is aiming to learn everything she can about sustainability in the fashion industry, and to translate her knowledge into features for The Independent where she currently works as an Executive Assistant.  

Off the back of her first fashion feature in The Independent last year, Caroline recently attended the Global Fashion Summit in Copenhagen to write a feature on what she sees as the biggest story to be told right now: how we only have six years left to hit sustainability targets before damage to the planet is irreversible.  

Here, Caroline reflects on her time in Copenhagen, and how being a member of Falmouth’s Sustainable Fashion community helped her feel confident amongst industry leaders.  

“I’m an Executive Assistant to the senior team at The Independent, but felt it was time for a bigger challenge. I work at a newspaper, and I love fashion and the planet, so it made sense to apply for Falmouth's MA in Sustainable Fashion, as I have a vision to educate people to make better choices when buying fashion. I have ambitions to report on the latest developments, but also to help sow the seeds of a different way of living; less consumerism, and more freedom. 

I noticed the Global Fashion Summit in Copenhagen was coming up in May, so I asked our Associate Editor, who had commissioned my first feature last year, if I could attend as a member of the press and write a feature – so that’s how I got there! 

I know for sure that if I wasn't studying the MA, I wouldn't have had the confidence to attend the Summit. I'm only two assignments into my MA, but I was able to attend the panel discussions equipped with a fully-rounded understanding of the subjects being discussed – from ‘Indigenous Leadership Perspectives’, to ‘Innovation for Value Chain Challenges’ and ‘Degrowth’.  The Summit covered everything, and it was inspiring to see activists and industry figures on stage trying to find a solution to a very complex problem. I arranged short interviews with some of the speakers, and honestly, I was terrified and way out of my comfort zone. These people have been experts in this sector for the past fifteen years!  

The highlight of my time at the Summit was being invited to an event at the family home of Ditte and Nicolaj Reffstrup – founders of B Corp Certified fashion brand Ganni – for the launch of The Ganni Playbook: How to Get Started Creating a Responsible Business, a book exploring how to successfully embed sustainability into brands. A panel discussion in their beautiful garden was followed by dinner in their unbelievably cool conservatory kitchen. Sitting at a table with people from Ganni, the New York Times, Forbes and London College of Fashion, talking about the Summit (but also people's kids and how beautiful the flowers were), was a true ‘pinch-me’ moment. 

I gathered as much information as I could, and now need to write the feature. My copy deadline is this week, and almost as terrifying as attending the Summit itself! I really want to impress my Editor and hope they ask me to write more on sustainable fashion. Google it in a couple of weeks to see how it turned out!” 


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