Ashley Victoria

Ashley Victoria

Profile

I graduated from the University of Leeds initially in Chemical Engineering, and later in Textiles Technology, after which I then went on to study fashion design at the London College of Fashion. I have worked as a fashion designer for several years after graduation, designing clothing for the UK and international markets, and I have always had a strong interest in sustainability. As a designer, I became increasingly aware of the challenges faced by the fashion industry to operate responsibly and reduce the impacts of their products. For many consumer products industries, this is not easy. As both designer and engineer, I believe strongly in the combination of science and creative thinking to develop innovative solutions and strategies for our changing, modern world. This has led me to join the Molecule to Product CDT and pursue my PhD, where I am looking at the development of sustainable composites, and the feasibility of finding the value in textile waste as a precursor to produce them.  I am incredibly passionate about working to create real, and long-term solutions to sustainability issues within industries such as textiles, fashion, and other consumer products, and the commercialization of innovative science to achieve this.

In addition to my PhD studies, I am keen to engage in other aspects of the university. I am a PGR rep for the School of Chemical and Process Engineering and will shortly be involved in the graduate board as a student representative, and I am currently part of a Leeds University Library task group aimed at reviewing thesis admission. I am also taking part in the Building Impact Momentum programme and Kickstart Policy Engagement Pilot which are both running this year.

Conferences/events to date:

- Annual Student Sustainability Conference 2021 – ‘Fast Fashion to Smart Materials’ - Video presentation

- BeCurious 2021 – Student video presentation on upcycling old clothes

- Molecules to Product Annual CDT conference 2021 – ‘Developing a Commercial Framework for the Sustainable Production of Circular Composites from Cellulosic Textile Waste’  presentation

- Bragg Centre PhD Colloquium 2021 – Student speaker -‘Developing a Commercial Framework for the Sustainable Production of Circular Composites from Cellulosic Textile Waste’  

 

Research interests

I’m looking into the development of all-cellulose composites using end-of-life textiles and understanding the structure-property relationships of such materials. As a designer, I am fascinated by the structures of fabrics, and how different weaves can be used in clothing to give a different look, or feel. I’m keen to understand how this dynamic translates to non-textile materials. I’m keen to look at ways to reduce textile waste, and develop functional, recyclable materials that could replace those that are difficult to recycle. The concept of open-loop product development systems is of interest to me, and the importance of considering the commercial feasibility for novel technologies.

Qualifications

  • MEng (hons) Chemical Engineering
  • MSc (hons) Advanced Textiles & Performance Clothing
  • FdA Fashion Design Technology