Care Label Project

What is the Care Label Project and Why You Should Care?

To change the way we care for our clothes – prolonging their lives and learning how to respect the environment – NJAL is proud to partner with AEG in launching the Care Label Project. Alongside selected industry partners, AEG today launches a new care label symbol that will be added to 18,200 garments of participating designers: ‘Don’t Overwash’.

90% of our clothes are thrown away long before they need to be, due to our culture of ‘fast fashion’ and outdated laundry habits. It’s time for a change. To prolong the lives of our garments and respect the environment, partners from the fashion and appliance industry joined forces to launch the Care Label Project and introduce a new notion in fabric care: ‘Don’t Overwash’.

Don’t Overwash means inviting customers to wash less, and at 40°C degrees or less. AEG has invited fashion houses globally, including selected NJAL designers to implement the awareness campaign within their garments. So far 18,200 styles of clothing have been updated with the new label that will help consumers to detach themselves from outdated fabric care habits. In 2016 AEG and NJAL selected a handful of designers from their community to launch an exclusive collection of designer garments for 2017 campaign, with lab tested care advice and a modern fabric guide. The initiative is a long-term collaboration aiming to deliver smarter washing technologies and fabrics, that can create a new sensitivity towards fabric care. The goal is for consumers to shop less, better and take care of their investment pieces so that they can be worn more than just one season. 

“Suppliers are putting Dry Clean Only on the labels because they don’t want to take any responsibility if the garment is ruined.” Doriane van Overeem, fashion designer

AEG conducted an international study, which came to the conclusion that a third of the consumers find care labels confusing, yet follow them. Meanwhile designers are lacking both time and infrastructure to do the proper laundry testing, and therefore add inaccurate instructions to their garments in order to avoid being responsible for any damage created during the washing process. The result is an overuse of Dry Clean Only.

“A garment should live a lifetime, and that is only possible if you care for it the right way.” Tim Labenda designer and International Woolmark Prize winner

Four films featuring a selection of today's most interesting emerging designers on NJAL are launched to open people's eyes on the most misleading care labels: Dry Clean Only with Doriane van Overeem, No Tumble Dry with Tim Labenda, Hand Wash Only with Clara Martin, and Temperature with Blackhorse Lane Ateliers.

The Care Label Project is a project that follows The Next Black, a film produced by AEG to create awareness and interest in fabric care, which in itself is a vital component in decelerating fashion and making it more sustainable. Besides NJAL, The Care Label project counts on crucial support from fellow industry partners such as The Woolmark Company and Fashion Revolution.

Over the past year AEG has closely worked with selected emerging designers and global powerhouses such as Woolmark Prizewinner Tim Labenda, Doriane van Overeem, Clara Martin, Adidas and Blackhorse Lane Ateliers, who have all been testing AEG’s products and updated care habits, in order to realise that modern technology can care for the most delicate fabrics in a satisfactory way. The garments that have been used for these tests are all included in the project’s own fashion collection – the Care Label Collection, complete with care advices ensuring a long-living piece of clothing.

“Aftercare of clothes has a great impact on both the longevity of clothes and the environment. However, our care habits have not changed in a very long time, even though we now have modern technologies that can prolong the life of both our clothes and the environment, if used correctly”,  says Ian Banes, Senior Vice President, Laundry at AEG

The following NJAL Designer have been chosen to closely collaborate with AEG to launch the Care Label Project:

David Catalán, Porto
Doriane Van Overeem, Brussels
Clara Martin, London
Jonathan Christopher Homme, Rotterdam
Marit Ilison, Tallinn
Noèlia Aranda, Barcelona 
O! Waste, Copenhagen 
Stine Ladefoged, Copenhagen 
StudioWinkler, Berlin
Tim Labenda, Berlin

Download the AEG Care Label Lookbook here.