The denim supply chain is lending a helping hand in the classroom.
Mexico-based denim mill Global Denim and Spanish technology company Jeanologia teamed with Trozmer Fashion University in Puebla, Mexico, for a partnership that introduced 20 graduating students to sustainable processes for denim. The semester-long project examined denim manufacturing from cotton to final garment, culminating in a student-designed collection and runway show based on sustainable artisan designs.
Through the partnership, students visited Global Denim’s facilities and worked with the mill to develop their collection. “Design and fashion start in the mill as it is where the designer gets inspired. The material is the core of the product,” said Anatt Finkler, Global Denim creative director.
Trends are also born on the mill floor. “The mill brings in so much innovation and newness to the game, and it’s so ahead in the fashion calendar that it can lead to many great developments in the future,” she added.
Students also received hands-on training from Jeanologia about sustainable finishing. Finkler said Jeanologia worked closely with the students, explaining the different sustainable processes in the denim industry and exploring the capabilities of laser to achieve the look of their designs.
The technology, Finkler said, adds a new level of cool to design for students. “Generations are changing and we can clearly see how this new wave of Gen Z students [is] really getting into the sustainable conversation,” she said. “When they saw how the laser works on denim, they were truly mind blown, as [it] reduces the use of water and chemicals, but also opened their mind to a million design possibilities they never thought they could achieve.”
Working with the next generation of designers is an opportunity for Global Denim to help strengthen Mexico’s standing in denim manufacturing. “We believe it is a country with so much fashion design potential and it’s not exploded yet in the area of denim,” Finkler said. “We have amazing fashion designers, yet not many use denim as their core fabric. We want to change this conversation and [encourage] designers through learning about the beauty of denim. It’s our joy and responsibility as a denim mill to do it.”