The cellulosic fiber market has a new player—Naia is its name and its Made in America by Eastman Chemical.
“Naia brings specific benefits—comfort, luxury appeal and ease of care—all coming from intrinsic properties and features of the yarn,” said Jeroen B. Jacobs global director of textile fibers at Eastman, said.
Jacobs said Naia will be manufactured at Eastman’s facilities in Kingsport, Tennessee.
Naia saw its initial introduction at Interfilliere trade show in Paris this January and is aimed at the intimate apparel market.
“We felt it fit very well in that segment with the benefits it brings and that the sector is a better place than say, the women’s ready-to-wear market to launch a new yarn or fabric,” Jacobs said.
While there are several cellulosic fibers entrenched in the market, such as Lenzing’s Tencel and Modal, Eastman feels Naia can set itself apart.
For instance, the fiber is made in such a way that fabric made with it can be heat treated and given a leathery hand, Jacobs noted.
“We’ve done a lot of development work and looked at which other fibers and yarns it can be blended with,” he added. Naia is seen moving into market segments like eveningwear or everyday casual wear, as well.
The Only Hearts brand is the initial adopter of Naia and further brand adoption is seen for next spring.
Naia also has moisture management qualities and sustainable origins. Made from wood pulp derived exclusively from sustainably managed and certified forests, Eastman Naia cellulosic yarn is a new take on a long-standing fiber that enables luxurious, comfortable and easy-to-care-for fabrics and apparel.
Naia is manufactured in the United States in a process where production solvents and waste are recycled back into the system for reuse or offered for resale. Eastman has received important certifications related to the sustainable properties and production of its cellulosic yarn. Among them are the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 and the USDA BioPreferred certificates.
Fabrics made of Naia release stains like wine and coffee easily, offer strong wrinkle recovery, and can be laundered at home.
Eastman sponsored a design challenge at O’More College of Design that culminates on Friday with a fashion show fashion show will be on display. Students created eveningwear using Naia for the chance at an academic scholarship.
Eastman is a long-time manufacturer of acetate and a recently launched of Avra Performance Fibers, a family of fibers enabled by a proprietary spinning technology. The first product enables a revolutionary ribbon-shaped synthetic fiber with a combination of shape and size never before seen, backed by a company with a 96-year history of manufacturing excellence.
“We definitely see the textile fibers area as having potential and an area in which Eastman will continue to innovate,” Jacobs added.