Affordability and sustainability are the most attractive traits for fashion production and retail in 2024 with ten fashion industry names making it to the list of the most innovative according to Fast Company’s annual index.

1. Parkwood Entertainment

For musical tours that become fashion runways, number 16 on the most innovative companies of 2024 according to Fast Company, Parkwood Entertainment earns its spot. The company produced Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour which led to thousands of fans flocking to Instagram to see what the star wore and who designed it.

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Beyoncé donned more than 140 custom-made outfits from labels including Pucci, Balmain and Loewe. According to data analytics firm Launchmetrics, the tour’s media impact value—a measurement of media placements on all channels (online, social, and print)—was $187m. (By comparison, the data firm tallies the media impact of Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour at $97.5m.) A lot of that value accrued to the fashion houses associated with the tour. And the designers saw a surge in sales traffic following the event.

2. Loewe

Fast Company calls Loewe creative director Jonathan Anderson’s take on fashion “surrealist”. It says he has transformed the brand from a dusty Spanish luxury house into the hottest brand of the moment thanks to creative techniques including sending models down the runway in pumps with smashed eggs on the heels and in sweaters that looked like a low-resolution graphic from a ’90s video game; looks that “poked fun at the absurdities of our current moment—quiet luxury, the metaverse. In the process, Loewe transcended its reputation as a fashion world rule breaker and made an impact on cultural more broadly.”

3. Skims

Kim Kardashian’s shapewear brand Skims truly is having a moment. Fast Company selected it as one of the most innovative in 2024 “for putting men’s underwear on centre court” and it has expanded into loungewear too. Last summer the $4bn brand scored a $270m funding package and industry experts encouraged fashion players to tap into the shapewear space saying there is significant scope for development.

4. Rimowa

Travelling has taken on a new persona in the era of social media, with fliers flocking to Snapchat and Instagram to share snaps of their designer travel trollies and overnight bags all too often alongside a #catchflightsnotfeelings caption. Rimowa has owned that, creating luggage that is in fact, super luxury and Instagrammable. Rimowa’s traditional aluminium bags have now had a refresh under a new collection made from polycarbonate. Lighter than the original, but still built to withstand the same knocks and grazes of travel, their vibrant colours add a touch of fun and style to travel.

5. Canada Goose

Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies nodded to sustainability as well as style. Canada Goose transitioned more than 75% of its materials to Preferred Fibres and Materials (PFMs) in 2023. PFMs include those that are recycled, organic, natural, bio-degradable and plant-based. Canada Goose is committed to eliminating per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from all of its products.

By spring 2024, all products made in Canada will be free of PFAS. By autumn 2024, all products made in Europe, including rainwear, knitwear and apparel, will be free of PFAS. In its manufacturing and operations, Canada Goose reduced its scope 1 and 2 emissions by nearly 45% year-over-year by investing in global renewable energy credits that address wind, hydroelectricity and solar power, and retrofitting its manufacturing plants. As it looks ahead, Canada Goose is measuring its scope 3 emissions and planning to set targets by the end of its current fiscal year, FY 2024.

6. Larroude

The brand made it to Fast Company’s Most Innovative Fashion Companies list as it has created greater accessibility to premium footwear. Its affordable price range for shoes rivalling the likes of Jimmy Choo and Manolo Blahnik have seen its popularity surge. The brand has been sported by A-listers including Taylor Swift and Naomi Biden and the brand sold more than 100,000 pairs of shoes in its first two years of business. Larroude’s shoes are priced at around the $200-300 mark and made in the founder’s home country – Brazil – where the first factory opened in 2023.

7. Todd Snyder

The brand has received kudos for “creating the next great American menswear label”. Fast Company says Todd Snyder has been “building the next big label by modernising classic American style, to make it more approachable to millennials.” And it has made a “concerted push into brick-and-mortar retail” which has included opening seven stores in cities like Atlanta and Washington, with 18 more coming by the end of 2024 and an international expansion planned for 2025. Its stores offer made-to-measure services driving 10-20% of revenue in those stores and the brand has capitalised on the demand for personalisation.

8. Citizens of Humanity

Over the last few years, fashion consumers are voting with their feet and taking their knowledge around sustainable fashion consumption even further, demanding information on where their products were made, who by and under what conditions. Citizens of Humanity has responded to that call, creating a farm-to-garment supply chain for regenerative cotton at a “scale unheard of in the fashion industry,” says Fast Company.

In 2023, Citizens of Humanity released its first batch of jeans—a million pairs—made from regeneratively grown cotton. It handpicked and worked closely with 11 American farmers, investing in their farms so they could transition to practices that pull carbon from the atmosphere and capture it underground. The brand then used the 1.8m tonnes of cotton they produced to make jeans at its own factory in California. Fast Company calls this a “radical approach in an industry where brands are often far removed from their raw material suppliers.”

9. Hill House Home

Comfort and convenience truly proved to be the way forward during and after the pandemic of 2020, and brands like Hill House Home took that and ran with it. The brand has created the “nap dress” combining comfort and “feminine flair” as described by Fast Company which adds the item has “became a widely replicated style, copied by fast-fashion brands and Everlane alike.”

Hill House Home is now launching a range of products based on the same aesthetic principles, reestablishing itself as a lifestyle brand that translates the current yearning for comfort into a wide array of elevated, well-designed products such as shoes and outerwear.

10. Circ

Fast Company has applauded this piece of “pioneering technology” which ultimately leads to greater circularity in fashion. Circ’s technology can recover the original materials used in polycotton blended fabrics. These are the most common materials used in the fashion industry, and they normally takes two centuries to biodegrade. Circ can transform these fibres back into new fibres over and over again.

In 2022, Inditex – owner of the Zara and Bershka brands – contributed to a US$30m funding round to help Circ expand its poly-cotton recycler designed to recycle clothing and eliminate clothing waste. Shortly after, the two announced a collection of womenswear under the Zara brand, made with textiles derived from breaking down blends of polyester and cotton into new recycled raw materials.

Circ has also partnered with footwear manufacturer Vivobarefoot to develop circular solutions and will be designing footwear uppers that can be recycled or upcycled.