It was the premiere of Calik’s new annual event series: the Turkish denim mill presented the so-called Ever Evolving Talks yesterday on the eve of Kingpins Amsterdam. Located at the Theater Amsterdam the whole afternoon was dedicated to several speeches and panels all of which dealt with some of the most relevant topics of the fashion industry. Sustainability, Millennials and how to address to them, wearable technology, the power of collaborations and last but not least the future of fashion were discussed on stage by a highly diverse range of renowned experts. Among the audience was a mix of business insiders, brand representatives, trade show organizers, B2B media and students–representing the denim industry as a whole.

SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL was among the guests and listened closely to what speakers had to say. Here are our favorite quotes from an enriching afternoon that according to Calik’s general manager Hamit Yenici will happen again in October 2019 on the day before Kingpins.

Event logo
Photo: Calik
Event logo

The best quotes...

...on the relevance of brands
“A brand is not a logo or a product. A brand is a promise. You have to bring your message across when consumers ask you: ‘What’s your point, and why should I care?’”
BJ Cunningham, entrepreneur & moderator

...on the future of wearable technology
“Just putting technology on a catwalk doesn’t make it fashionable. When it comes to wearable technology the biggest challenges are: are the products washable and reliable, are they manufacturable, can they be competitively priced, and are they sustainable.”
Matthew Drinkwater, Head of Fashion Innovation Agency, London College of Fashion


...on sustainability
“I don’t think it’s that hard to embrace sustainable production. There are many more platforms that push sustainable production than ten years ago. It just depends on each individual company how they want to work. And for sure, all of us have to move faster when it comes to sustainability. Take the amount of data companies collect today: to evaluate this data should avoid overproduction in the future.”
Adriana Galijasevic, Denim & Sustainability expert, G-Star Raw

 “All of us sustainability directors within companies are still not where we want to be in terms of sustainable production. Of course, any business organization subscribed to the economic bottom line. And of course, we would all be dishonest if we’d say that it’s not the almighty dollar that rules. So we need to be creative in how to manage around all of that.”
Roian Atwood, Director of Sustainability, Wrangler

Sustainability panel
Photo: SI Team
Sustainability panel

...on Millennial consumer behavior
“To measure emotions is crucial to understand buying decisions. The Millennials are the most open consumer. They are used to tell their opinion because they are used to it. As digital natives they are always asked for their opinion, write a review, etc. in the online world. But they want to trust you, and currently we see trust crisis especially when it comes to politics. So Millennials tend to trust on a personal level, for example via online reviews. 80-90% of Millennials trust in online reviews as much as in the opinion of a close friend. Considering that every third online review is fake that causes a huge contradiction.”
Thimon de Jong, Founder, Whetston Strategic Foresight Company

Thimon de Jong talks about millennial consumers
Photo: SI Team
Thimon de Jong talks about millennial consumers

...on the power of collaborations
“Collaborations make it easier for a brand to be on 24/7. You just keep your brand name out there. Is there an added value in collaborations for the consumer? Well, maybe in some. But many collabs are done for the sake of collabs. They might even make a bigger brand look more interesting when it teams up with a smaller one. And in the end it’s easier for a company like Nike to have their Air Force 1 redone with a couple of guys than developing completely new styles so many times a year.”
Alec Leach, Digital Fashion Editor, Highsnobiety


“People who consume clothes want more from it than just hype. That’s ending. Mentality is changing. It’s about more than just looking good and feeding up people’s insecurities.”
Willy Chavarria, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Willy Chavarria

...on the future of fashion
“The trade show ship is sinking. Due to the Internet and its speed and because consumers expect things to arrive quickly, the old model in the seasonal style is too slow. The booth concept is obsolete, the buyers don’t buy on the spot any more, so the whole B2B situation is not where it should be.”
Ouigi Theodore, Creative Director, The Brooklyn Circus


 “In the future the question is how the relation with the consumer can be cyclic and how the consumer can make an experience with your brand. Patagonia is a good example: you buy their jacket and you can have it repaired when needed.”
Matthew Williams, Founder, Alyx


Goody bags at Calik's Ever Evolving Talks
Photo: SI Team
Goody bags at Calik's Ever Evolving Talks


...on simplicity and innovation
“We have to be aware that there’s no such thing as simplicity. So it’s all about the perception of simplicity, about what the consumer recognizes as simplicity. Because consumers prefer things being simple, not being complex. For example, a bigger choice of products actually makes it more complicating for the consumer to choose. I also think about simplicity in terms of language: speak like a human when communicating with your consumer.”
Ken Segall, Former Creative Director, Apple



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