Need to Know
05 : 02 : 19

The 2019 Lexus Design Awards finalists, Asics recycles sportswear to produce Olympic uniforms, dairy is still popular despite the rise of plant alternatives.

Havana Club launches a streetwear line

Daily Paper and Havana Club, Cuba

Cuba – The rum brand is seeking to build a fan base among streetwear aficionados by collaborating with clothing label Daily Paper.

The companies have joined forces to produce an eight-piece clothing line that draws inspiration from Cuban design cues and identity. To select the final pieces in the collection, Havana Club hosted a competition in which three young creatives were flown to Cuba and mentored during a week-long creative workshop. The launch also coincides with the release of a limited-edition bottle of Havana Club 7 Años rum, which was co-designed with Daily Paper.

With this partnership, the rum brand hopes to position itself as the spirit of choice for young streetwear fans. ‘It marks the start of the next chapter for Havana Club as we look to lead the rum revolution and recruit the rum drinkers of tomorrow,’ explains Ludmilla Stephkov, international brand director at Havana Club.

When targeting tomorrow’s customers, brands must consider the behaviour of Gen Viz – a tribe of consumers who prize unexpected collaborations and like to have their say in their favoured brands’ products.

This clothing tag doubles as a detergent sample

OMO, ​Beirut OMO, ​Beirut
OMO, ​Beirut OMO, ​Beirut

Beirut – Unilever detergent brand OMO has developed a water-soluble clothing tag made entirely from its laundry detergent.

The OMO Tag is a marketing effort that rethinks in-store sampling by taking detergent out of the supermarket and into clothing retailers. Each tag contains enough detergent to wash up to three garments and is designed to be placed directly inside the washing machine with the clothing.

OMO – also known as Persil – has teamed up with Beirut’s largest chain of sporting merchandise stores, Sports 4ever, to promote the tags. It is attaching the dissolvable tags to every item of sportswear on sale in stores. ‘The OMO Tag reinforces OMO’s Dirt is Good brand purpose, encouraging families to embrace real-life experiences,’ says Samer Anouti, home care marketing manager at OMO.

By transforming what is typically a throwaway component of packaging into something with additional functionality, OMO is demonstrating the value of Whole-system Thinking.

Asics upcycles sportswear to create Olympic uniforms

Tokyo – The official uniforms for Japan’s teams in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be created from thousands of pieces of pre-owned sportswear.

Through the Asics Reborn Wear Project, the brand aims to gather 30,000 items of clothing using collection boxes that will be set up in stores and at sports events. Clothing from any brand will be accepted, with Asics extracting fibres from the donated clothing to manufacture new garments for Japan’s Olympic and Paralympic teams.

Allowing consumers greater insight into the upcycling process, a barcode placed on the collection boxes can be scanned to unlock access to messages from athletes and updates on the manufacturing method. The move is part of Asics’ wider plans for circular production processes, with plans to replace the virgin polyester used in its shoes and sportswear with 100% recycled polyester.

With convenience typically outweighing consciousness, brands such as Asics are finding ways to integrate sustainable fashion choices into our daily lives. For more, read our microtrend Fast (Conscious) Fashion.

Asics Reborn Wear Project (ARWPJ)

Lexus Design Awards names 2019 finalists

Green Blast Jet Energy by Dmitriy Balashov Green Blast Jet Energy by Dmitriy Balashov
Arenophile by Rezzan Hasoglu Arenophile by Rezzan Hasoglu

Tokyo – The car-maker has announced the six finalists for this year’s Lexus Design Awards (LDA), which celebrate transformative design solutions with a positive impact.

The six concepts aim to address near-future challenges by championing biodegradable materials, using renewable energy sources or reducing carbon footprint. ‘This year’s submissions revealed a strong awareness of the connectedness of our world and the need for increased social consciousness,’ says John Maeda, technologist and LDA judge.

Among the finalists is Rezzan Hasoglu, whose Arenophile project aims to create new composite materials using desert sand. Architectural start-up Prevalent is developing Solgami, an innovative window blind that uses origami geometry to allow users to better balance lighting and electricity generation. Fellow finalist Dmitriy Balashov’s Green Blast Jet Energy will make it possible to collect the energy produced by aircrafts taking off, and re-use it in airports.

Learn more about the winner of last year’s LDA, Malaysian creative studio Aesthetid, in our dedicated interview.

Stat: Plant-based milks have grown but dairy is still popular

Rather than choosing one or the other, Americans are consuming plant-based milk as well as dairy milk, according to a new report by Dairy Management. The survey found that 44% of milk-drinkers in the US purchased both dairy milk and plant-based alternatives in 2018. The survey also highlighted questions about potentially misleading terminology – more than half of consumers said they believe plant-based drinks are labelled as ‘milk’ because their nutrition content is the same as dairy.

Although plant-based alternatives, such as almond and soya milk, have been gaining mainstream appeal for years, 50% of consumers are still unwilling to give up dairy. While brands tend to assume that those who eat plant-based foods are strictly following these diets, there is a growing flexitarian movement, as demonstrated by the Planetary Health Diet, which balances human health with environmental sustainability.

Thought-starter: Is retailtainment the future of e-commerce?

NTWRK is shaking up retail with its pop culture-powered video commerce app. Its CEO, Aaron Levant, discusses why hyper-urgency is the future of shopping.

NTWRK is a new mobile-only shopping app that sells exclusive products via live video content. ‘On a weekly basis, we release episodic product drops that you can only watch live, featuring an exclusive product presented by a well-known personality,’ says Aaron Levant, CEO at NTWRK. ‘It’s a finite time window of 15–20 minutes, during which time the audience has to tune in and watch live in order to buy that product. After that, it’s gone for ever.’

With this new approach to e-commerce, NTWRK is championing a hybrid model of entertainment-driven retail. ‘This idea of combining things is becoming increasingly popular, especially with the way that consumers are digesting media and commerce,’ explains Levant.

‘Video-based commerce, which in America usually exists in a different format – on television – was a really interesting idea for us. We hadn’t seen anybody doing that for the pop culture-driven Millennial and Generation Z audiences.’

Read the full interview here.

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