The Laundry Pile at London Design Festival

The cleaning and care of our clothes is a universal experience, yet how much thought do we give it? The Laundry Pile: Materials, Meanings and Mundanities of Everyday Life will explore laundry and clothing based practices as part of London Design Festival and includes an exhibition, book launch and multidisciplinary panel discussion featuring Ideal development chemist, Dr Alexander Papiez.

The event takes place on Wednesday 20th September and begins with an exhibition and book launch from 4pm at Lila’s Launderette in Marylebone. This will be followed by a panel discussion from 6.45pm at the function room upstairs at The Carpenters Arms, opposite Lila’s Launderette.

Entry is free to those who register in advance here but limited to 40 places.

We’ll be providing free samples of FILL Neroli laundry liquid to all those who attend the panel discussion.

Exhibition at Lila’s Launderette

Located in a central London launderette, the exhibition explores some of the cultural and social meanings that laundry practices help to reconstruct and reinforce. It brings together a range of work from a small group of fashion activists, theorists and researchers from London College of Fashion, University of Huddersfield and Kings College London who have explored laundry from a range of different perspectives. It includes a mix of photography, garment artefacts, illustrations and a live garment grooming station.

The Laundry Pile: Materials, Meanings & Mundanities of Everyday Life

Panel discussion as part of London Design Festival 2017

6.45pm – 8pm on Wednesday 20th September 2017, the Carpenter’s Arms (upstairs function room), 12 Seymour Place, Marylebone, London, W1H 7NE

Laundry has transformed from being a low-technology hand practice done in the home or by local laundresses with the use of a few basic implements; to a fully mechanised steam industry at the turn of the twentieth century based on models of mass production and profit maximisation, and finally back to a domesticated home practice. As laundry practices have evolved, one outcome (of many) is an increase in environmental impact. Indeed, the impacts of laundering are inadvertent and somewhat ironic: laundry can be understood as a practice of both purity and pollution.

Cutting through the mundanity that is usually associated with doing the laundry, this panel discussion will bring together the viewpoints of experts and academics from a range of areas including: fashion and design, sociology, geography, history and the detergent industry. From these diverse perspectives, the discussion will explore how laundry practices have developed and evolved, taken on new meanings and consequently given rise to different types of environmental impact. Further, it will explore more sustainable directions for the future of fashion and laundry.

Panellists include:

Professor Kate Fletcher, Centre for Sustainable Fashion, London College of Fashion

Dr Alexander Papiez, Development Chemist, Ideal Manufacturing

Professor Rosie Cox, Department of Geography, Birkbeck University of London

Dr Victoria Kelley, Lecturer in Cultural Studies, Central Saint Martins

Dr Thomas Roberts, Lecturer in Sociology, University of Surrey


Dr Andrew Brooks, Department of Geography, Kings College London