The following article came into my news feed in a blog from Fashion University.
“Instead of researching for inspiration, research a current problem in the fashion industry.
Instead of producing more fashion industry waste, use waste from the fashion industry to produce.
Instead of using extensive (and often toxic) processing to achieve a new finish, explore a new process to reduce the fashion industry’s footprint on the environment.
Recently featured in an issue of Hue, a magazine published by FIT, Stacy Flynn and Christopher Stanev are a dynamic duo who have set out to change how clothes are made, in effect proving the “everything’s been done before” argument dead wrong. Formerly with DuPont, Target and Eddie Bauer, Flynn had sourced millions of yards of fabric and seen first hand the pollution produced by textile factories—in particular those factories using recycling technology.
While using plastic from bottles to create polar fleece may sound like a move in the more sustainable direction, unfortunately, the process necessary to transform plastic into fleece is almost as detrimental as creating polar fleece sans recycled plastic bottles. And those retailers who have started recycling programs in which consumers bring in clothes they will no longer wear are only making a small dent in the current landfill crisis in the US. Of the 16 million tons of textiles Americans dispose of each year, on 16 percent is reused or recycled.
And so, Flynn and textile chemist, Stanev began to research how they could create a virgin fiber by dissolving and purifying donated clothes, then extruding the results for use in creating new garments. The pair did not find answers overnight—Flynn started asking questions in 2010, partnered with Stanev and together they invested their savings and retirement accounts to discover a way to liquefy fabric, extract the raw cellulose (which makes up 98 percent of cotton) and turn it into a reusable sturdy fiber.
Stanev’s team of researchers developed safe, reusable solvents to break down fabric and in 2015, Patrice George (Flynn’s former weaving teacher) began to weave what Stanev and Flynn called Evrnu yarn into denim. At first the yarn was very weak. George described it as “a cross between cotton candy and peanut brittle.” Stanev worked to make each new skein of Evrnu he sent George stronger and she created 4.5 yards of denim with Evrnu as the weft and cotton as the warp.” (Credit From Fashion University blog)
To me this was super exciting! And I discovered they are in Seattle! And they had partnered with Levi Straus to incorporate this technology. I have spent a little bit of time digging deeper and can’t find a Levi product made with this. Unfortunately. I guess I will have to dig a little deeper on a day with a little more time. Does anyone have any knowledge of this or other partnerships using this technology? Would love to support it. Especially with an American made textile by the yard using this product technology. One can always dream.