C2CAD: A Sustainable Apparel Design and Production Conceptual Framework

EPA Grant Number: SU832483
Title: C2CAD: A Sustainable Apparel Design and Production Conceptual Framework
Investigators: Cao, Huantian , Farr, Cheryl , Heine, Lauren
Current Investigators: Cao, Huantian , Farr, Cheryl , Gam, Haejin , Heine, Lauren , Hur, Jun-Young
Institution: Oklahoma State University
EPA Project Officer: Nolt-Helms, Cynthia
Phase: I
Project Period: September 30, 2005 through May 30, 2006
Project Amount: $10,000
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2005) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: P3 Challenge Area - Materials & Chemicals , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , P3 Awards , Sustainability


Many environmental problems related to apparel industry, such as toxicity in dyeing wastewater, could be minimized by apparel designers and manufacturers. However, no apparel design and production model put designers' role in environmental sustainability into consideration. This project is to develop, implement and evaluate an apparel design and production conceptual framework [C2CAD] that allows apparel designers and manufacturers to consider environmental sustainability in their design and production processes.

McDonough and Braungart's "cradle to cradle" model provides designers with a new way to design products and eliminate many environmental problems during the design phase of the product life cycle. C2CAD framework integrates "cradle to cradle" into apparel design and production models to provide sustainable production guidelines for apparel designers and manufacturers. We will implement C2CAD in knitwear design and production and produce a C2CAD knitwear as a proof-of-concept research.

Using C2CAD framework apparel designers and manufacturers select chemicals and materials based on their inherent human and environmental health and safety. Therefore, employee occupational safety and local people's living quality will be improved. With no harmful air water and solid wastes released from apparel manufacturer, apparel manufacturer and local community will save a lot of money in pollution prevention and treatment in both the short and long term. With materials designed to cycle safely at the end of the products' life, the C2CAD framework also helps diminish resource consumption in the apparel industry.

The development of the C2CAD framework has been accomplished in this proposal. We will conduct three phases of research in the 8-month project: 1) implement C2CAD in knitwear design and production and produce a C2CAD knitwear; 2) evaluate the performance, including colorfastness, abrasion resistance and dimensional stability, and cost of C2CAD knitwear; and 3) revise C2CAD based on evaluation results and prepare an instructional unit to teach Apparel Design and Production students C2CAD framework.

C2CAD framework and the implementation case study in knitwear production will be integrated into a core course, Mass Production of Apparel and Related Products, for the Apparel Design and Production major. After learning C2CAD, apparel design and production students will pay more attention to the environmental impacts of their future work and thus will become more environment-concerned designers for apparel industry.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 2 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

environmentally conscious manufacturing, effluent, waste reduction, industry (apparel, textile),, RFA, Scientific Discipline, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION, TREATMENT/CONTROL, Sustainable Industry/Business, Sustainable Environment, Technology, Technology for Sustainable Environment, Economics and Business, pollution prevention, cleaner production, waste reduction, environmentally conscious manufacturing, clean technologies, ecological design, alternative materials, pollution prevention design, product life cycle, apparel design and production model

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report