As of October 5th a new, truly unique experience has opened in Amsterdam. Designed to inspire, inform and equip, it’s the brainchild of Fashion for Good, the collective committed to seeing the fashion industry shift towards sustainability around the world.

Normally when a press release explaining something like this lands in my inbox I think ‘ok cool’, and move on, but for once I actually happened to be in the right place at the right time. I coincidentally happened to be in Amsterdam for a few days visiting friends during opening week, which meant I actually had the opportunity to visit. I had to head home just before the opening night started, so I popped in a day early to get a tour of the place and, let me tell you, it’s a must visit if you find yourself in town.



Housed within Rokin 102, a historic building that’s over 100 years old, the Fashion for Good Experience takes the form of an interactive museum that is open seven days a week and free to the public. It utilises the latest technology to create an immersive experience; taking you on a journey to explore fashion, innovation and sustainability through telling the stories of the clothes we wear, showing us ways we can take action, and exploring future developments in the industry.

Immediately after entering you’re met with the infinity mirror, filled with facts about the fashion industry and areas where change is needed. It’s a striking first impression and one that reminds you that, beyond the fascinating technology and impeccable curation, this museum’s true concern is for human life and a desire to preserve our planet.

Beyond the entrance, each exhibition in the museum is meticulously crafted to break things down in a way that makes the complicated business of fashion digestible. One room traces the history of fashion from the industrial revolution to now, while another breaks down all the steps in the supply chain comprehensively. From fabric production, dyeing and sewing to transport and end of life, each area is covered in a way that is easy, understandable and engaging. It explains concisely and highlights the issues without ever being condescending, instead it educates and guides you clearly and calmly, making the experience accessible for experts and novices alike.


But it’s not just a place of information. Throughout the museum you can also find interactive activities that spark creativity and fun. In the Design Studio you can design your own sustainable Cradle to Cradle CertifiedTM GOLD T-shirt, using live projection to construct your design from 144 different options and allowing you to immediately print it on site. And in the Innovation Lounge you can take a kaleidoscopic selfie in the GIF booth, sending it to a striking installation to demonstrate commitment to a better fashion industry, alongside an array of other things available to touch, watch, and interact with.

I’m always one to appreciate good curation, which this museum has in droves, but for me this was most evident in the Innovation Lounge. It was easily my favourite area of the museum, as here you can discover a wide range of innovators alongside their designs to change the industry. Their creations are brought to life through samples, tangible garments, videos and interviews, making a space that is easily understandable and helps you get a (literal) hands on feel for what the future of fashion could look like. Some of my favourite moments included getting to see mushroom leather for the first time, learning about mango leather for the first time (yes it’s a thing, yes I touched it), and seeing a new kind of biodegradable packaging that looks like plastic but definitely isn’t (the exhibition includes the material at different stages of decomposition over a span of a few days, to prove it does actually break down).




Each visitor to the museum is also able to go on a personalised digital journey thanks to an RFID-bracelet. As you walk through the experience you can touch your bracelet at various stages; giving you information, commitments and badges that represent practical actions. There are 33 actions you can commit to, and you can turn these into your own personal guide, a Good Fashion Action Plan, that you can take home with you, giving you a strategy to be a more conscious fashion consumer. You can also stay connected to the Fashion for Good Movement through the plan you create, as they’ll contact you about any events that may be helpful to your continued progress. For example if you committed to mending your own clothes, Fashion for Good will contact you when they host a workshop on mending and sewing. It means that not only are you given practical tools for changing consumer habits, but you’re also supported as you try to implement them in your life, connecting you to a likeminded community and continuing to resource you as you progress.

Finally the museum also houses its own Good Shop showcasing pieces that prove better fashion is already available, if we know where to look. The store features curated product collections built around a theme that changes every three months. The first is focused on the role of water in fashion and features products from the likes of ECOALF, Adidas x Parley and Kings of Indigo, all available to purchase.

Honestly, it’s hard to fully encapsulate the Fashion for Good Experience in writing. While I can enthusiastically go over the details and the things I got to see, there’s nothing quite like actually visiting and experiencing it for yourself. The ability to curate well is a skill that often goes unnoticed and undervalued, but Fashion for Good have created the perfect blend of informative, sensitive and non judgemental. They’ll tell you what’s wrong with the industry, but they won’t make you feel bad about what you used to buy. They get that it’s complicated, which is why they break it down in a way that makes sense, but isn’t patronising.

Humanising facts and figures, making us care, guiding you to an understanding of why these things are important, these are difficult feats to achieve. But this experience manages it while still retaining a sense of excitement and optimism that the industry could change. Fast fashion is Goliath, but this museum takes time to show that there is a David in this story too. Innovation is fascinating, but it also proves that we really could move ourselves towards a better future. And by also adding practical actions and continued support, they also work to shift consumer mindsets whose demands often bring about systemic change.

And at the end of the day, it’s also a really fun day out, for free! Next time you find yourself in Amsterdam, make sure to look them up.