BRIA and SABINNA partnered up to focus on improving sustainability practices in the fashion industry
The teams at fashion-tech innovation agency BRIA and forward-looking fashion brand SABINNA have collaborated to transform a fashion capsule collection of wardrobe “staples” into new 100% biodegradable materials for use in garment packaging and shop interiors. By developing innovative processes for transforming garments into new biodegradable materials, they have successfully demonstrated that without compromising on design, it is possible for brands to create commercial fashion that is circular and that never needs to go into landfill, with the potential to avoid millions of tonnes of garment landfill waste every year.
This was an EU-funded project, supported by WEAR Sustain, where BRIA x SABINNA set out to develop processes for transforming end-of-life garments made from cellulose-based materials into new 100% recyclable and biodegradable materials. The new materials which were created are similar to paper, card, plastics and even wood, and can be used for garment packaging, tags, building shop interiors and many other applications.
In order to demonstrate their new developments to the fashion community, the teams at BRIA and SABINNA worked together to co-design and produce a capsule collection of garments made from solely cotton and viscose, which can then be processed in different ways at the end of their use. The resulting fibres can be reclaimed via their new processes and recycled into other new materials, which are 100% cellulose-based and therefore biodegradable.
Their aim was to produce a capsule collection that maximises the circular aspects of production and recycling, whilst choosing the most ethical and non-toxic chemical processes to dissolve the garments and reconstitute the fibres into new usable materials.
The capsule collection was used as a “proof-of-concept” to demonstrate to other brands within the fashion industry that these new processes can be used to transform any garments made from cotton or viscose into packaging materials/shop interiors at the end of their use, rather than these garments adding to the millions of tonnes sitting in landfill sites around the globe.
By using chemical, not mechanical recycling, these methods require less water, generate less waste, require no bleaching and have a lower carbon footprint. The range includes garments made of cellulosic materials, selected depending on which material is the easiest to recycle with the minimum environmental impact.
Importantly, this collaboration was equally led by textile/garment design and materials science throughout, with no compromise made to the aesthetics of the garments or recyclability of the end product.
The BRIA x SABINNA team are now looking to partner with global fashion brands to implement these processes to produce brand-specific recycled packaging/store interiors and improve sustainability practices across the industry as a whole.
This project brought us a nomination for the Drapers Awards 2018 in the category Best Fashion Retail Innovation.
Read more articles about the project here: