You all know Pharrell Williams and his song Happy became a global phenomenon when it debuted 2 years back. And then jeans is the other omnipresent entity. What you may not know though is that Pharrell recently became a co-owner of denim brand G-Star Raw.
Pharrell isn’t exactly new to the Dutch premium denim brand. Two years back, in 2014, his sustainable fabric company Bionic Yarn partnered with G-star on sustainable fashion that led to the innovative Raw for the Oceans project – jeans made out of trash collected from our plastic-choked oceans !! Yes!! Check out the range here.
Blue is the new Green
You remember that UrbanMeisters kicked off with the COP21 climate conference in Paris last year in Nov 2015. And if your remember, we specifically talked in this article, about how blue i.e. our oceans are the biggest environmental concern. Because:
- Oceans are actually the largest supplier of oxygen (beating the forest!).
- Also, the ocean is really our guardian angel shielding us from far more fierce climatic changes as they absorb a large part of the heat we produce in form of carbon.
The scenario is a gloomy one. Our oceans are clogged with millions of tons of plastic trash (that will never biodegrade), threatening marine life and contaminating the food chain with toxic chemicals as a lot of this toxic plastic is ingested by marine creatures. We talked about this in-depth in our article on food pollution here.
Plastic Fantastic – How are these jeans made
But instead of gloomy scenarios, at UrbanMeisters we believe in the positive power of change. So here’s the silver lining. Bionic Yarn – the company that makes yarn out of ocean trash. Tyson Toussant & Tim Coombs are the co-founders of this game-changing New York-based startup. Originally inspired to get into the recycled fabric business by Patagonia, which, in 1993, introduced its own line of fleece jackets made of recycled plastic.
Toussant and Coombs set out to develop a recycled fabric that would be as durable as any other fabric on the market. Today, the company’s patented yarn is made of three layers:
- a core that gives the fabric strength and stretch,
- a middle layer of recycled material that makes up 45 percent of the yarn
- a top coating of any fiber—be it cotton, wool, linen, or nylon—to give the fabric the desired feel.
As Toussant says. “But the beauty of it is in the cross section, the yarn always carries ocean plastic with it.”
Pharrell Williams became so excited about what Toussant and Coombs had created that he asked to join the company as its creative director. And rest is a story of many collaborations including G-Star Raw.
But this path-breaking innovation isn’t the end of the story. Bionic Yarn will have to address other issues with regard to its environmental footprint. For instance, one of the most environmentally taxing parts of designing denim are the dyes and washes they’re treated with.
Raw For the Oceans
For those looking to show support to this innovative denim range, check out their latest 2016 collection and shop till your mouse drops: Click here.
G-Star recently in April hosted a retrospective at their HQ to celebrate 25 years of the brand and Pharrell, the new head of imagination of G-Star Raw, was present there to announce his co-ownership of the brand. We leave you with this video of Pharrell talking about why he partnered with G-star and how these jeans are made: