Nike’s making app

Joseph Maduma
August 30th 2013

Those who are regular readers of Good Design will know that we are huge advocates of Nikes ‘Better World’ initiative. Taking a Goliath of a company to the vanguard of sustainable design is no mean feat. Now as part of its commitment to designing a better, more sustainable future, Nike has released MAKING — a new app that helps designers and product creators make informed decisions about the environmental impacts of the materials they choose. In short – it’s brilliant and brings to life nearly all the values of our own Good Design manifesto. If Good Design had created an app for designers, this would be it! Read on to find out why.

MAKING is a designer-specific, easy-to-use tool that ranks materials used in apparel based on four environmental impact areas: water, chemistry, energy and waste. Through direct comparisons, designers can quickly see how material choices stack up. The app was created by Nike with insights and feedback from students at London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion.

“We’ve created the MAKING app to empower any designer around the world to make better materials choices in the initial stages of the innovation process to ultimately create products that are better for consumers and better for the planet.”

Lee Holman, Nike VP of Apparel Design.
Nike Making App cover 1

According to industry data, by the year 2015, the global apparel industry is expected to produce more than 400 billion square meters of fabric annually — enough to cover the entire state of California. Additionally, dye houses today use up to 200 tons of water for each ton of fabric they process.

“Today, more than ever, we believe that systems innovation, transparency and sharing of tools and indexes will propel business and society towards a more sustainable future.”

Hannah Jones, Nike VP of Sustainable Business and Innovation.
MAKING is a designer-friendly app that ranks materials used in apparel based on four environmental impact areas: water, chemistry, energy and waste.

MAKING is powered by data from the Nike Materials Sustainability Index (MSI), a database built on more than seven years of materials research and analysis.  This data has been made public with the goal of helping to lead industry sustainability efforts and provide designers and product creators with guidance in selecting materials with lower environmental impacts. MAKING scores materials out of a possible 50 points.  Each material in the app is further ranked based on the specific environmental impact areas of chemistry, energy, water and waste, as well as whether the material uses recycled or organic content

Alasdair_Leighton-Crawford_RIGHT SIZE
Alasdair Leighton-Crawford presents his sustainable design, created using bets versions of MAKING, to fellow London College of Fashion (LCF) students. Nike worked with LCF to collect additional insight and feedback during the development of MAKING.

Nike worked with the London College of Fashion (LCF) to collect additional insight and feedback during the development of MAKING.  LCF is widely regarded as a leader in research and education of sustainable design, and students from their Centre for Sustainable Fashion used the app to create capsule collections

“The app helped us identify materials that have lower environmental impacts, without compromising the design process. MAKING shows that sustainability is not a limit, but an inspiring new way to look at product creation.”

Alasdair Leighton-Crawford, a student at London College of Fashion.
Created by London College of Fashion Students Helen Barr, Alasdair Leighton-Crawford, Emma Ranger, Penny Tue, this look features a layerable tracksuit that allows for maximum freedom of movement.

MAKING is available to download free of charge from the Apple store.