Annual fair fashion festival M-fair organized in Mechelen, Belgium supporting circularity

On the 9th of October, the city of Mechelen, Belgium, organised the annual fair fashion festival M-fair, which has been increasingly focusing on circular fashion consumption and production models since the CECI project started (2019) – as part of the fair fashion philosophy (closing loops locally is going hand in hand with a transparent and fair fashion value chain). We have been using the M-fair as our yearly dissemination event for the broad public, and this has turned into a real success so we keep this action going, under one of our actions in our action plan. This year's edition of M-fair put African textiles into the foreground as a central theme.

We had more than 1000 visitors; to

• the market with local, circular designers and fair fashion products – with quite some Belgian designers of African origin,

• to the workshops where citizens could make their own reusable lunch wraps or musical instruments from construction waste,

• to the panel debate on what happens with the clothes and shoes that we put in the container for textile waste (= selective waste collection on textiles – people think they donate to give their clothes a new life and help people in need, but a lot ends up on garbage dumps in Ghana or other African countries).

• The fashion show has been curated by the fashion training of a high school in Mechelen, and all collections (clothes and handbags/backpacks) have been made by students from “waste items” (not only textiles but even e.g., a student used a piece of the wooden floor as a base for a handbag) and deadstock.