A-GAIN GUIDE: The guide to reusing used clothing.

© Andrea Bos
© Andrea Bos
What to do with unused or worn garments? The A-GAIN GUIDE shows new ways.

To find the best solution for this is often not easy. Now a new project is launched: The A-GAIN GUIDE shows all Berlin citizens the most creative and efficient ways to repair, pass on, upcycle and recycle their used clothing. As the first free digital platform of its kind, it is funded by the Berlin Senate Departments for Environment, Transport and Climate Protection and for Economy, Energy and Enterprises. As part of '202030 - The Berlin Fashion Summit', the A-GAIN GUIDE celebrates its release for the first time during Fashion Week in Berlin. The focus is on the MAP function, which offers consumers:inside a very good orientation aid with an overview of all textile recycling services on a map, which will be launched live on Instagram @a__gain__guide on September 9, 2021 - 12 noon and can be found on www.a-gain.guide.

The platform A-GAIN GUIDE, jointly developed by the association Circular Berlin and the social business LoopLook, educates Verbraucher:innen in the sense of the German Sustainability Strategy about the potential that lies in worn-out textiles. According to the initiators, the MAP's filter function shows which shoemakers, alteration tailors, used clothing containers, second-hand stores, designers and other initiatives are the best places to go for recycling in the immediate vicinity.

"If, for example, your favorite wool sweater has moth holes, the user of the A-GAIN GUIDE can quickly and easily find a classic art maker or conjure up a new piece of clothing from it in an upcycling workshop," explains Alessandra-Isabel Hager of LoopLook. In the near future, an interactive questionnaire will also be linked to the A-GAIN GUIDE, so that users can receive tailor-made solution suggestions. All in all, with the help of the A-GAIN GUIDE, relatively unknown ways of reuse will be made accessible and traditional techniques will be given a new lease of life. Both nature and consumers gain added value several times over, as garments are repaired or adapted to individual tastes in the most sustainable way possible.

Arianna Nicoletti (Circular Berlin) emphasizes that "no country in Europe produces more textile waste than Germany". Stefanie Barz (LoopLook) adds, "Considering the ever-shorter lifespan of 'fast fashion' clothing, its devastating production conditions and the associated negative impact on our environment, a social change towards a circular society, more quality instead of quantity, and an effective recycling system is urgently needed and only possible with the involvement and participation of all stakeholders."

By consumers actively using the A-GAIN GUIDE, a rethinking of fashion consumption can be achieved and combined with much more joy and practicality. In this way, the topic of textile reuse is taken out of the sustainability niche and into the breadth of society. At the same time, new synergies are generated in the city that can be transferred to many other cities and initiatives.

"The "open-source" model provided by the A-GAIN GUIDE team, along with the functions and designs developed, is suitable for this purpose," says Arianna, underlining Circular Berlin's concern for more openness and participation.

The A-GAIN GUIDE is an important cornerstone on the way to a greater sense of responsibility and a smaller ecological footprint on a local level - at the root of the circular economy.

The platform is created in cooperation with Circular Berlin and LoopLook as a result of the award by the Berlin Re-Use Ideas Competition 2020. As joint winners, the initiators share the vision of using creative strategies not only to reduce textile waste streams and close material loops within the urban infrastructure, but also to give more visibility to small and medium-sized entrepreneurs and furthermore to promote local networks.

You can watch the launch video of A-Gain via this link.

Partner Call: The MAP of the A-GAIN GUIDE with its clear filter functions will be gradually expanded to include many more Berlin districts and service providers. All service providers of textile recycling in Berlin are invited to register via the registration form to become official partners of the A-GAIN GUIDE!