Specialty Fabrics Review May 2021 - 16

[ BRIEFS ]

breakthroughs

Innovations in advanced textiles
Designer creates a
decomposing dress from algae

L

ondon-based designer Scarlett Yang has
created a means to use algae extract and silk
cocoon protein to create a glass-like dress that
grows over time and can decompose in water within
24 hours. The biomaterial dress changes shape in
response to different humidity and temperature levels,
twisting and creasing as these conditions increase.
These changes will vary with geographic location and
the season in which the
garment is worn. During
a dry winter, for example,
the garment would
stiffen and look more
sculptural. When exposed
to water, the garment will
decompose more quickly
or less, according to the
water conditions. The
garment would degrade
naturally in rain, river
or sea water as well.
This project is currently
under entrepreneurship
development with Imperial
Enterprise Lab, London,
U.K. The designer hopes
her creation can offer a
sustainable alternative
to fashion products.
LEFT: Scarlett Yang's biomaterials
dress is modeled by Matryoshka
Wadhwani. Photo provided
by Scarlett Yang.

Sustainable shoes to be
made from 'Plant Leather'

S

ustainable footwear brand Allbirds
Inc. has invested $2 million in the
startup Natural Fiber Welding (NFW)
with plans to use its plant-based leather
in Allbirds shoe. Ecotextile News reports
that NFW has created a special version of
its Mirum leather alternative called Plant
Leather, which has been fine-tuned for
the footwear company. Plant Leather is
made with vegetable oil, natural rubber
and other bioingredients, with a carbon
footprint 40 times smaller than leather
and 17 times smaller than synthetic
alternatives, according to Allbirds.
Because it's naturally pigmented and
biodegradable, it also leaves a smaller
footprint when it has completed its
useful life. The shoes will be available
in December 2021. Photos: Allbirds.



Specialty Fabrics Review May 2021

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