An exploratory study of Swedish and Romanian organisations to investigate upcycling practice in the clothing industry

Manoj Kumar Paras*, Rudrajeet Pal, Daniel Ekwall

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The process of redesigning is one of the essential steps in upcycling, which comprises ideation, reconstruction and fitting. This paper aims to study the best practice of upcycling in the clothing industry. This study is an attempt to standardise upcycling/redesign process.
An exploratory approach was adopted to perform the research. This study draws on the multiple organisations involved in the upcycling of clothes. The organisations chosen for this study are located in Sweden and Romania using the snowball technique. Semi-structured interviews, direct and participatory observation approaches were used to collect information. The collected data are systematically analysed using NVivo 10 software.
This paper provides empirical insights into the diverse practices of upcycling. Process, product and demand-based were three fundamental approaches to performing the redesigning process. The fabric quality and durability, variations in size, colour and pattern, skills and efforts required in the extraction of parts and environmental consciousness and awareness were the main factors influencing upcycling process.
Research limitations/implications
The use of the European case may miss best practices from the other region. This study may help scholars to understand the method of upcycling. A practitioner of upcycling can use the findings to improve and standardise the existing process. This research is beneficial for society, as this leads to the reduction of textile wastage.
This paper conceptualises some of the best practices of clothes redesign. This provides a good insight for the organisation for the improvement in the redesign business.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalResearch Journal of Textile and Apparel
Publication statusPublished - 12.01.2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management
  • upcycling
  • redesigning
  • remanufacturing
  • reverese value chain
  • closed-loop value chain


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