WE WOULD LIKE TO SAY A BIG THANK YOU TO ALL THE FANTASTIC EXHIBITORS, VISITORS AND PARTNERS FOR BRINGING OUR 4TH NEXT TEX SHOWCASE TO LIFE.
Fungi, Algae and Plant Dyes – Living things and natural materials stole the show this season at the KEYHOUSE – Munich Fabric Start’s dedicated innovations hall – where Sourcebook’s Next Tex exhibition was stationed.
We were honoured to host the newly launched IndiDye – the revolutionary natural dyeing solution from Norwegian textile company Expert Fibres. By utilising ultrasound IndiDye achieves a new level of colour fastness hitherto unseen in traditional plant dyeing methods. The patented technique requires no chemical fixatives and relies on ultrasonic pressure waves to push colour pigments from liquid plant dyes into the core of unspun fibres. This process significantly reduces water consumption and eliminates waste water altogether, while lower temperatures and shorter dyeing times improve energy efficiency and cut down on emissions. Once dyed, the coloured fibres are then spun with other unbleached fibres to create IndiYarns, which currently come in cotton jersey and woven fabrics as well as Tencel blends.
Furthermore the dye plants – such as turmeric, safflower and comfrey – are grown using only natural fertilisers, undergo crop rotation to boost soil conditions and are free of pesticides. The farms themselves are in areas with a natural abundance of water, limiting artificial irrigation, and are close to the dyeing mills to reduce the environmental impact of transport. Finally, through QR codes the consumer can even trace the dye batch of the end product. Durable natural colour doesn’t get more sustainable and responsible than this!
Also harnessing the power of nature was MycoTex: a 100% biodegradable fabric made from mushroom mycelium – the root network of fungi. Conceived by Aniela Hoitink, the designer/microbiologist behind the Dutch textiles research centre NEFFA, MycoTex aims to transform the way fast fashion is made and disposed of. The lab-grown material requires no farmland, chemicals or pesticides, uses little water, isn’t affected by the seasons and can be put on the compost heap after use. Unlike regular cloth, MycoTex is pasted, grown and shaped on a mould thereby removing the need for spinning yarns, weaving and sewing.
Elsewhere in the KEYHOUSE, AlgaeFabrics by Studio Tjeerd Veen Hoven was on display at the Sustainable Innovation stand. The H&M Global Change Award-winning renewable and recyclable material grows under water where it converts carbon dioxide to oxygen – a process which could simultaneously combat global warming! Talk about smart textiles.
Back on Next Tex turf, inspired by nature, the LED flower-strewn Electric Garden dress by Rainbow Winters showed artificial signs of life by changing shade chameleon-style when exposed to different colours, whilst by-wire.net’s Closed Loop Smart Athleisure Fashions for women monitor vital signs with the help of seamlessly printed and laminated sensors. By simply moving these sensors typically found in the front of shirts to the back, ingenious designer Marina Toeters instantly made technical performance wear more female-friendly. What’s more the active wear is designed so that both the garment and the technology can be recycled.
“Sustainability lives,” confirmed FashNerd.com founding editor Muchaneta Kapfunde from the Sourcebook x FashNerd Press Lounge, “it’ll be the way that fashion rolls.” This was further corroborated by the three KEYHOUSE HighTex Award winners: Soorty Enterprises for their sustainably produced water-repellent denim, Vivify Textiles’ 100% recycled polyester chiffon and Tintex Textiles’ interlocked cotton fabric made from salvaged elastane. It’s only a matter of time that all 1800+ Munich Fabric Start exhibitors will be expected to follow suit. Learn more about how our exhibitors are making their innovations sustainable by heading over to our new Next Tex YouTube channel where you can also see our video interview with Muchaneta in full.
Through the KEYHOUSE Munich Fabric Start demonstrated once again that it is a step ahead of the rest – not least because revered trend forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort chose to reveal her predictions for the coming seasons here. We were thrilled to see big name brands take great interest in the innovations offered at Next Tex, so when you start finding printed sensors in the back of sportswear or bio-fabricated textiles on the high street, remember you saw it all here first.
We look forward to seeing you at the next Munich Fabric Start AW19/20 on the 4th to 6th September 2018!
For the complete list of exhibitors, speakers, lectures and workshops please refer to the Next Tex SS19 Programme.