It seems the waters have become a new textile hunting ground for several top brands like G-Star Raw, Adidas, Patagonia, and others. These businesses have been making clothes from plastics collected from the oceans, which is then turned into fibers.
Adidas, for instance, has combined Ocean Plastics with a zero-waste 3D-printing technique to create a trendy athletic shoe as part of their partnership with Parley for the Oceans, an initiative that inspires repurposing ocean waste and raising awareness of our progressively dire plastics issues.
Go to Everlane’s flagship store in San Francisco, go past the cocoon coats, and you’ll see the brand’s new initiative: clothing created from recycled plastic. It comes in the shape of a new outwear collection named ReNew which has saved some three million plastic water bottles from beaches and landfills, reusing them as synthetic fabrics.
The line of puffer jackets and plastic parkas follows a crazed fad from companies small (Rothy’s), big (Adidas), niche (Girlfriend Collective), and mainstream (H&M), all of which have of late incorporated recycled plastic into their clothing items. Some, such as Kelly Slater’s Outerknown line, reuse all types of shoreline waste as clothing. Others, like Timberland, repurpose only water bottles.
Plastics Live Forever
Water bottles, regardless if chipped, collected, or melted, can have a 2nd life as sneakers, yoga pants, or a puffy jacket. Brands like Patagonia have been using plastic for years. Though recently, more businesses are using recycled materials as a way to diminish their environmental impact, or maybe just to earn admiration from their customers.
Sustainability marketing clearly earns brand street cred. What’s difficult to realize is exactly what effect these measures will have on the earth. But reusing plastics for shoes and clothing is a step in the right direction.