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PG Denim and Rudolf Group Develop Antimicrobial Fabric Concept

Despite the global pandemic and the Italian government’s decision to shut down industrial production, two players from Italy’s denim sector are joining forces to develop a new fabric concept for what they expect to be a new consumer mindset once the restrictions are lifted.

Fabric developer PG Denim and chemical specialist Rudolf Group are partnering on a fabric collection that will offer consumers protection from infectious bacteria. Called “[F-word] Bacteria,” the capsule collection uses two technologies from Rudolf Hub 1922, Rudolf’s denim innovation center outside of Milan, to create a new notion of body armor.

To achieve a high level of protection, the fabrics uses a microstructure covered with metallic silver that acts as an effective bacteriostatic. Many types of bacteria that can cause infection cannot adapt to fabrics that have been treated with silver ions. The microstructure, designed for high resistance washing, is the same one used in hospitals to prevent infections.

The second technology applies a high performance, fluorine-free water repellency. Brands like G-Star Raw have already adopted Rudolf’s water repellency technology for commuter collections. The application maintains the fabric’s soft touch and boasts a high resistance to washing and abrasion.

However, it’s a property that both PG Denim and Rudolf believe will gain as consumers seek protection from body fluid droplets that can also spread bacteria.

“This collaboration stems from the companies’ desire to project out a new vision for fashion—a modern one that also encapsulates an invisible, sophisticated, responsible level of protection,” said Paolo Gnutti, PG Denim founder and 2019 Rivet 50 member.

Moving forward, Gnutti said brands will have to shift to producing fewer but better products.

“We are all hoping that this very serious worldwide situation will end soon,” he said. “Until then, we [will focus on] creating a fashionable and intelligent collection. We’ll give our small contribution to the future and make a better world.”