Fashion has a dark secret. It’s the second-largest polluter after oil. Yes, the second-largest. You read that right. Not international flights. Not freight shipping. Fashion. The industry emits a lung-choking 1.2 billion tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere each year, outstripping international flights and shipping combined.
It’s an unnerving statistic. It begs the questions, “What should we do about it?” and “What can we do about it?” It’s easy for consumers to modify their behaviour, but how do you make an industry go green when it thrives on excess?
Enter Ingvill Kerob, the woman holding the fashion industry accountable. She’s the driving force behind Repairable, an Oslo-based company that puts customers in contact with professional tailors and cobblers. We’re buying more clothes than ever before, five times more than our grandparents, to be exact. Rather than repairing worn or damaged garments, we opt for buying replacements instead. Repairable makes it easier for customers to get connected with experts, so they can order repairs and alterations that they otherwise can’t do themselves. It saves their items from landfills and eliminates the need to buy more.
At first glance, Repairable is just that – a repairing service, but it’s also so much more. They focus on creating digital tools for brands and stores to employ more sustainable practices and work towards a circular economy. They also offer one to one sessions for companies, helping them to devise targeted plans so they can clean up their act.
Before Ingvill turned her hands to save the earth, she was working for Kraft Foods and Mondelēz International in various product management roles. After seven years, she moved to Nestlé Nespresso to work as their Environment Health and Safety Specialist. She worked as a project lead, helping Nespresso to devise and launch their recyclable coffee capsules.
Working in the food industry helped her gain insight into the problems of wastage and developed her knowledge on how to fix these problems. Realising she could transfer these skills from food to fashion, she set out to create her own company to address the waste and pollution issues faced by the apparel industry from both the consumer and business aspects.
Anyone who fights to save the planet is a hero in our eyes. Her resourcefulness, commitment, and passion have helped Repairable become what it is today. Ingvill’s story serves as an inspiration to anyone who wishes to join the movement for a cleaner, greener future.
Are you ready to show up?