The number of circular alternatives in the denim market has grown since Kingpins New York last took place in 2019.
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Recircular is Artistic Milliner’s best example of circularity. The collection utilizes an ultra-premium blend of fibers that results in the softest, strongest possible circularly produced materials from the company’s circular facility. The hub is poised to become the “beating heart of Artistic Milliner’s recycling operations and will power our efforts to truly close the loop,” said Baber Sultan, Artistic Milliners director of research, product and trend.
Bossa’s Future Denim concept remains a source for circular inspiration. Hague Savetrue is the mill’s new GRS certified recycled linen blended item. The fabric has the authentic look of comfort stretch denim and boasts 92 percent water savings compared to traditional dyeing methods.
Cone’s Nothing Goes to Waste fabric collection includes Black Jack and Barstow—two fabrics that Pierette Scavuzzo, Cone Denim’s design director, said best represent the mill’s approach to circularity.
“For Blackjack, we use our internal dye waste to create a new RCS-certified yarn. This new yarn, combined with a fiber-dyed modal, creates a unique product that is a fade resist black and is a sustainable and modern approach to color,” she said. “Black Jack has a 90 percent water savings compared to conventional dyeing, which is attributed to no additional dye process and the use of our G2 Flash Finish.”
A take on modern workwear, Barstow uses 100 percent GRS certified recycled fibers, a blend of pre-consumer recycled cotton and post-consumer recycled polyester. The camel color is achieved by color sorting the collection of pre-consumer cotton scraps. The fabric also has a water savings of 88 percent.
Artistic Fabric Mills’ (AFM) fabrics that contain 50-100 percent PIW cotton, produced by its own internal industrial waste according to Textile Exchange guidelines, are among the mill’s most circular offerings. Champagne is a classic 10.75 oz. fisher herringbone made with 100 percent PIW cotton. The fabric’s “beautiful steel blue color” is derived from the color of the recycled fiber. “By skipping the whole dyeing process, we save additional energy, water and chemical savings,” said Susan Lawrence, AFM VP of sales and marketing in North America.
Reed is AFM’s nod to denim from the’90s. This mid-weight comfort stretch indigo fabric includes 74 percent PIW cotton and Lycra EcoMade. “The shade begins as a beautiful medium dark and can be washed to achieve a dark to light medium wash range without using bleach,” she added.
Every fabric in US Denim Mills’ Reborn collection is made with 100 percent recycled fibers. Denim O, a key fabric in the collection, is made from 100 percent PIW fibers. Minimal energy consumption makes it unique and helps reduce its carbon footprint, said Aleem Ahmad Khan, US Denim Mills senior manager research and business development. “We are ecstatic to bring our sustainability-inclined approach and eco-friendly products to the world.”
With a system that collects garment waste and stock from local factories, as well as its own cut waste, XDD is ramping up its range of circular fabrics. The XDD Sewage Recycle Process dissolves and regenerates the fiber and re-spins the yarn before moving to the fabric production process.
XDD creative director Kelvin Wan said this process regenerates 10-15 percent of all waste collected. The key to regenerating the denim, he added, is to apply the denim waste to similar products to maintain the quality. The final collection spans black, indigo and blue black casts.
“One of the most important steps in sustainability is circularity,” said Serhat Karaduman, Calik Denim CEO.
E-Denim, a product group that wraps recycled cotton around a core of recycled yarns, is one of Calik’s solutions. The concept offers power stretch and comfort stretch product alternatives with up to 70 percent recycled content. “In addition to this, we add recycled Tencel to the yarn and achieves maximum amount of recycled content that can be technically made in ring spinning,” he said.
RE/J, a 100 percent recycled concept, is another. Made with post- and pre-consumer waste and open-end spinning, the fabric has a unique vintage aesthetic. It also has value-added fibers like Lycra EcoMade and Repreve.
“Considering the environmental aspect, we have eliminated synthetic materials and used the natural cellulosic based fibers to create low impact denims,” said Rashid Iqbal, Naveena Denim executive director. The mill’s natural stretch denims are manufactured by using 100 percent cotton “with magical constructions” to give comfort stretch and weft low shrinkages as compared to conventional comfort stretch denim.
“I take pride in sharing that we are creating denims that are good for us and better for the environment,” he added. “Since the pandemic hit us, we have witnessed massive transformation in denim preferences. Comfort stretches have taken over the skinny jeans and natural Ssretch denim is giving us an edge in this time that is 100 percent biodegradable comfort stretch denim.”
Orta’s best example of circularity is its mono-material (and potentially biodegradable and compostable) Torque fabrics. Through Orta’s patent-pending Magical Comfort stretch fiber and yarn technology, the mill can achieve comfort in rigid denim with zero elastane, PET or any petroleum-based fibers. The fabric is offered in medium and heavy weights for genderless designs.
Zennure Danışman, Orta marketing and washing manager said the eco-engineered stretch “breaks today’s standards” and “pushes the limits with new alternatives that solve the synthetic fiber usage and micro plastics problem.”
The mill’s Huxley All Season fabric family also offers brands circular options with a rigid aesthetic. Woven with 20 percent post-consumer recycled cotton and 20 percent pre-consumer recycled cotton in deep blue or ecru natural, Danışman described the range as “net-positive denim” that is suitable for a wide range of seasonless silhouettes and wash applications.