Although Post-Couture says you can bring just about any material to your local maker space or fab lab for laser-cutting, the company also offers its own range of ready-to-purchase fabrics, including one derived from post-consumer recycled Sprite bottles.

However you make them, Post-Couture means for the process to be entirely hands-on, and for good reason.

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“I hope, and think, that by offering people a chance to influence and be part of the design and production process of their garments will create much more attractive products then the current mass-manufacturing industry does,” van Strien explained. “Who wouldn’t choose a garment that is designed and made especially for them and their body shape over something standard that everybody else has, as well?”

With Post-Couture, van Strien hopes to do away with the worst excesses of the fashion industry, including textile waste.

“Post-Couture garments are designed on the spot by our software whenever someone wants to buy one, and thus also produced only when they’re sold,” he said. “This means that the 30 to 40 percent of all the garments that arrive at a shop and that currently get thrown away at the end of each season will be a thing of the past.”

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DIY 2.0

Some may regard van Strien’s preference for synthetic over organic fibers controversial, to say the least, but the designer says he believes that the employment of recycled and recyclable synthetics in a closed-loop system will prove more sustainable in the long run.

Then there are the benefits of producing locally, a tack that significantly cuts back on transport time, distance, and fuel.

“Currently materials are grown in very specific parts of the planet, they get transported to the few countries that produce most of our clothing, and then the garments are spread around the world again,” van Strien said. “By trying to have all those aspects; material, production and consumption in the same location this could have a huge impact on the carbon footprint of this industry.”

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Post-Couture also seeks to bring back clothing’s intrinsic “value,” something that has been eroded by disposable culture and ever-lower prices.

“By giving consumers the option to not only have the garment designs being made-to-measure, but also giving them the options to customize the designs and produce them locally from materials that they pick, we hope that gives the garments a lot of added ‘emotional value,'” he said.

“I have nothing against beautiful clothes or looking good,” he mused, “as long as we enjoy it consciously and without the damaging effects on people and the environment.”

+ Post-Couture Collective