Anja is a Senior Lecturer for BA and MA Fashion and supervises PhD students. Her research focuses on sustainability in fashion. She has previously worked as a designer for both global brands as well as independently.
Originally from Germany, Anja moved to the UK to study fashion in 2004. Anja worked as a designer for an international sportswear company in Germany and later a streetwear company in Manchester. In 2008 she moved to Indonesia to set up an ethical womenswear brand. She subsequently returned to the UK to expand on the experiences of setting up an ethical enterprise in Asia. Anja undertook an MA in Fashion and the Environment at London College of Fashion (UAL), which provided many opportunities such as receiving funding to participate at a Design Camp in Kolding, Denmark, exhibiting work at the Chelsea Flower Show artist’s retreat, and featuring work in a short film that was screened as part of London Fashion Week 2011.
Anja won a fully funded PhD studentship award at the University of Brighton, which she completed in 2017. Her thesis was entitled ‘Fashion Design for Longevity: design strategies and their implementation in practice’. Her research explored approaches for garment life extension for both the wearers and makers of fashion. The methodology she developed for part of her doctoral research was published in 'Opening Up the Wardrobe: A Methods Book' (Fletcher and Klepp eds., 2017). In 2017, Anja was also commissioned by Professor Kate Fletcher to respond with a research-led design concept to findings from the international research project 'Craft of Use'.
Since joining Leeds Beckett University in 2016, Anja has continued developing research and publishing in the area of sustainability in fashion. Her teaching is informed by her research in this area.
Anja teaches on design related modules across all year groups for BA and MA Fashion, including Fashion Industry, Observation Interpretation and Realisation, Trend Analysis, Fabric & Colour and Visual Studies. She is module leader for Dissertation at BA level and also supervises MA and PhD students. Her teaching is underpinned by her research and she has previously been invited to share her expertise at London College of Fashion, Parsons New School NY (USA), University of Brighton and Bucks New University.
Through her research, Anja is exploring the intersection between use practices, sustainability and fashion design. Recent research explores the experiences of clothing quality and how this impacts sustainable practices (Connor-Crabb and Rigby, 2019). Current research is exploring changes in clothing practices of women with young children – specifically the impact of motherhood and changes induced by the Covid-19 pandemic. Clearer insight into how garments are worn and cared for opens new spaces for designers to work in.
Anja’s professional activities also include reviewing for academic journals including Fashion Practice: The Journal of Design, Creative Process and the Fashion Industry and The International Journal for Consumer Studies. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Member of the Union of Concerned Researchers in Fashion.
Anja welcomes enquiries from people interesting in research collaborations or PhD Supervision.
Connor-Crabb A; Rigby ED (2019) Garment Quality and Sustainability: A User-Based Approach. Fashion Practice, 11 (3), pp. 346-374.
Connor-Crabb AC (2016) Design Strategies for the Eternal Reoccurrence of the New. Fashion Practice, 28 (1), pp. 22-43.
Connor-Crabb A; Rigby ED (2018) Quality: Beyond Seamlines and Fabrics. In: Global Fashion Conference 2018, What’s Going on? a Discourse on Fashion, Design and Sustainability,, 31 October 2018 - 1 November 2018, London.
Connor-Crabb AC (2015) 'Thinking outside of the box: Design toolkits and their relevance in fashion and sustainability'. In: Nordes – Design Ecologies, doctoral consortium, 7 June 2015 - 10 June 2015, Konstfack – Univeristy College of Arts, Crafts and Design. Stockholm, Sweden.
Connor-Crabb AC (2014) Fashion Design for Longevity. In: GFC2014 – Reworking & Rethinking Global Fashion, 20 November 2014 - 21 November 2014, University College Ghent, Belgium.
Connor-Crabb AC (2014) The eternal reoccurrence of the new – Design for Longevity. In: Fashion thinking - theory, history practice, 3 October 2014 - 1 November 2014, University of Southern Denmark, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, University of Copenhagen / Designmuseum Danmark, Kolding School of Design.
Connor-Crabb AC (2017) Method 17. By brand: ‘The wear and tear of clothing – perceptions on clothing longevity’. In: Fletcher K; Klepp IG ed. Opening up the Wardrobe – A Methods Book. Novus,
Connor-Crabb AC (In press) Seam Decoder at UAL Showroom, Holborn, London, University of the Arts London.
Connor-Crabb AC (2015) Seam Decoder in 'PLATE' at Nottingham Trent University.