Fashion brands are increasingly adding sustainable dyes to their collections and calling it out in their marketing.
EarthColors uses plant-based dyes made from herbal extraction and agriculture waste, which Archroma developed to replace petroleum-derived raw materials. The dye range is sourced from up to 100 percent renewable resources.
The colors available in Esprit’s capsule collection include mauve, beige, blue, khaki, pink and blush. The hues are made from the non-edible parts of nut shells, almond shells, rosemary, saw palmetto, bitter orange and beetroot. The brand is also working on future fall/winter and spring/summer collections with more garments dyed using EarthColors.
The alternative dye collection comes in line with Esprit’s values of sustainability. The brand developed its first eco-conscious collection made of 100 percent organic cotton back in the early ’90s.
Part of EarthColors’ appeal, said Kristina Seidler-Lynders, Esprit manager of social and environmental sustainability, is its ability to scale plant-based dyes.
“Colors traditionally made with plants come with some limitations in terms of color reproducibility, fastness and they require huge amounts of plants to produce the quantities needed at industrial scale,” Seidler-Lynders said.
Archroma’s EarthColors has been recognized for its strides in sustainability. The dye range was the Gold Winner of the OutDoor Industry Award 2017, in the sustainable innovations category.
Finding like-minded partners has been key to EarthColors’ success. G-Star Raw was the first denim brand to use the technology in 2017. The Dutch brand followed up with a second collection that included denim, tees and sweatshirts.
“The whole team at Esprit really embraced the possibilities of EarthColors,” said Dion Cragg, an Archroma brand solutions marketing executive for its Europe business. “They truly pushed the boundaries in adopting the concept across every possible article, from T-shirts and scarves to canvas sandals and bags. The end result simply looks amazing, and we are so incredibly proud to be able to support such creativity with our nature-based innovation—because it’s our nature.”