Danish fashion brand Ganni and Mexican biomaterials company Polybion teamed up to create a blazer made from bacterial cellulose. The bacteria are fed fruit-waste in a process that greatly reduces carbon emissions compared to leather production, according to Polybion. Look through the gallery for more eco-friendly textile solutions.
Algaeing's biodegradable algae-based fibers reduce water consumption by up to 80% compared to traditional fabrics.
Courtesy Tammy Bar Shay/Algaeing
Other fashion brands have also realized the power of algae. Men's apparel company Vollebak created a biodegradable t-shirt that is compostable at the end of its life, made from eucalyptus and beech pulp, and algae.
Also taking inspiration from nature, Italian fabric manufacturer Orange Fiber uses the by-products of citrus fruits to create silk-like textiles.
Orange Fiber srl
In 2017, using the first batch of Orange Fiber's fabric, Italian fashion house Salvatore Ferragamo created the first-ever collection made from citrus fibers (pictured).
Orange Fiber srl
From textile innovators Bolt Threads, Mylo is a vegan leather alternative made from mycelium, fungi grown in vertical farms using 100% renewable energy -- making it sustainable as well as animal-free.
Mylo's "unleather" has won the backing of brands including Stella McCartney, Adidas, and Lululemon (pictured), which unveiled its capsule collection of yoga mats and sports bags in July 2021.
Another textile innovation from Bolt Threads, Microsilk sustainably replicates the silk proteins found in spiderwebs in a lab, creating a high-strength, elastic, and soft textile, according to the company. Its first product collaboration was a shift dress (pictured) by designer Stella McCartney, unveiled at the New York MoMA in October 2017.
Ashley Batz for Bolt Threads
Founded in 2019, Mexican startup Desserto came up with a creative, vegan alternative to leather using cacti. Designed for handbags, footwear, apparel and even furnishings, it was included in H&M's debut Science Story collection in March 2021. The company also creates exclusive materials for cars, via its sister brand Dessertex.
Rather than create a new textile product, Reverse Resources is trying to optimize what we already have. Its digital platform maps and traces leftover textiles so that manufacturers can make use of excess materials from other factories.