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BIOMIMICRY FOR DENIM

Imagine a jean that has no pigments, no harsh chemicals but still, it is the jean you recognise and love.


Let's take a few steps back and really look closely at a denim jean.

How would it be made today? Or how would it have been made at any time during the last 150 years?

Except for the invention of synthetic indigo in the 1865, the answer is roughly the same. Chemicals are needed to make indigo soluble in water. More chemicals are needed to remove oxygen from the VAT. Then the fabric is dipped many many times to build up the layers of indigo that we all love. Since the 70s and commercially in the 80s we have then used harsh chemicals to remove this colour and create effects and marks.


Is there a better way to do this? Using 3.8 billion years of evolution, can we find a better way or even a totally different way of thinking about this?


Mother Nature is all around us, has seen it all before and has seen things disappear as they failed to adapt or evolve.


This brings me to the term 'Biomimicry'.

The mimicking of nature (biology).


Where to start? Which things in nature can lead me/teach me a better way to harness colour through cell structure, colour structure or even a breakdown of colours?



What if a jean could be like a leaf?  A jean that grows, matures and changes colour with the season and, at the end, drops back into the earth to break down and create nutrients for the next year. What if you could pick a pair of jeans/fabric when ready and pause at the perfect time?

 

Looking back to colour in nature, blue morpho butterflies are a magnificent blue, so beautiful in colour that they seem to shimmer. But take a closer look and astoundingly there is no blue colour pigment at all in these amazing insects. The colour is purely structural, Absorbing all colours and only reflecting back the very special blue colour at 480nm on there wings.



Companies such as CYPRIS, based in the uk, have mimicked this to create colours from transparent solutions. 

 

What if we focus efforts in these ways? What sort of world could we live in?

 

Thanks for reading, this is the start of BIOMIMETIC DENIM.

Anyone from a biology background or innovation that would like to be a part of this journey, please drop me a line.


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