Inspired by ancient cultures that lived on the planet without damaging it, the collection called Indigo Eden centers on genderless garments made with sustainable materials from transparent companies and patterns that require few pieces.
Relying on long-term relationships in the textile industry, Berto reached out to a who’s who of technical textile innovation to create the collection. Participants spanned Olmetex, Ribbontex, Panama Trimmings, Imbotex, Bottonificio Lenzi 1955, Riri Group, Fashion Art, Aquafil spa, Yulex, Studio 70, Ied Milano, Jeanologia, Mic Filati and Pure Denim.
Each offered its most advanced fabrics, trims and finishing services in the spirit of collaboration and experimentation, Berto said. Graphene combines with silk, hemp and organic cotton throughout the range. Water repellency, tearproof, thermal-regulating, antibacterial, antistatic, and fireproof properties underscore Berto’s vision for the future.
“I was inspired by three populations—Inuit, Hopi Indians and Dogon of Mali—for their myths and because they are populations that have always lived with the planet without exploiting it,” Berto said, adding his goal for the collection is to draw awareness to how material choice can affect climate change and the future of the planet.
As neither a brand nor a designer, Berto said he had “maximum freedom of expression” in developing the collection. Silhouettes are simple with nods to sci-fi. Others reference technical outdoor gear and loungewear.
A denim jacket and trousers are made with PureDenim’s 100 percent organic cotton fabric colored with internally produced indigo dye called Smart Indigo. Traditional dyes are chemically reduced through hydrosulfites that are often pollutant and hazardous to health. Smart Indigo uses an electrochemical process that uses only indigo pigment, caustic soda water, and electricity. The organic cotton used for the fabric is also traceable through FibreTrace.
Olmetex’s graphene-infused fabric adds fireproof properties to trousers and a cape, while graphene-based threads dyed at high speed with ink can then send data through low-power Bluetooth. The technical fabric company’s hemp and R-Silk blended fabrics add breathability, abrasion resistance and anti-UV ray qualities to the collection’s smock, trousers and gloves.
A neoprene jacket and pants made with Yulex’s vegetal rubber are some of the most futuristic pieces. Due to its high energy production and petroleum or limestone base, neoprene is traditionally one of the most environmentally unfriendly materials produced, Berto said. Yulex Closed Cell Foam is a plant-based neoprene replacement with a “dramatically” reduced carbon footprint.
Sustainability is carried into trims as well. Garments feature Riri Group’s 100 percent recycled polyester zipper tapes, Manifattura Italiana Cucirini’s Tencel sewing threads and labels made from Moringa seeds by Panama Trimmings.
The result, Berto said, is a “realistic” collection that serves as a case study for more responsible material sourcing and pattern making.