‘We have created Denim’s next generation.’ – Pharrell Williams
On August 15th 2014 G-Star launched their brand new recycled plastic clothing line: G-Star RAW for the oceans. With Pharrell Williams as curator and co-designer the project is likely to gain a large following and plenty of coverage, bringing the issue of plastic waste in our oceans into the limelight at last. It’s all well and good having celebrity endorsement, but does this project actually have real potential?
The team at G-star have developed a new Bionic Yarn, a world first created for their denim products. As the website states, in a step by step process guide, the plastic is collected from the ocean and is then broken down into small fibres which can then be spun. They are spun into a strong core yarn and then helixed with cotton, this creates Bionic Yarn. The yarn is then weaved or knitted into the fabrics ready to make RAW for the oceans clothing. Bionic yarns are up to 400% stronger than conventional yarns, meaning clothes are long-lasting.
‘I see fashion in the future as a place to wear the responsibility’ – Founder of Bionic Yarn Tyson Toussant
RAW for the oceans was taken to New York Fashion Week where they showcased their creations along with conferences discussing the issue of our oceans plastic problems along with their new Bionic Yarn. The collection has been well received, particularly when Pharrell himself has been wearing the clothing as he is something of a fashion icon. It seems that together they have achieved the difficult task of stirring interest and gaining support for the cause, whilst also creating a contemporary and relevant product to capture the attention of younger generations too.
G-Star, Pharrell – We salute you! Keep doing what you’re doing!
On Friday we went to the Prince of Wales on Gloucester Road, and when it came to closing time we were pleased to be handed these plastic free cups to empty our pints into:
On Thursday 7th August we headed down to Bordeaux Quay to the Green Mingle to meet some of the people who are making Bristol European Green Capital happen. The event is on the first Thursday of every month and gives like minded eco-concerned individuals the chance to mingle and find out what is going on in our green city. The atmosphere was great and after grabbing a beer at the bar we delved into the crowd to try and do our best mingling. We were fortunate enough to meet some lovely people, including Demian, a surveyor from Gleeds, who is trying to encourage more sustainable practices in his firm. We also met the lovely Anna from Pukka Herbs who spoke to us about the possibilities of reducing waste from drinks companies by returning glass containers to be refilled and the potential issues with chemicals and bacteria that make this very difficult. Anna also discussed some of the important changes bigger supermarkets are making to the way they treat waste and plastics and why it is important to recognise this as well as promoting local businesses. This is something we will be looking into further very shortly.
We were then introduced to the couple in the photo below. Edward works at Nextek- sustainable solutions for polymers and recycling, and his wife is part of the Earth Champions Foundation. Edward talked to us about a new type of plastic that is currently being trialled in Kent. Apparently the reason that black plastics can’t be recycled is because the infra-red systems used in mechanical recycling can’t respond to black plastic effectively to sort it. This new type of black plastic which is actually a dark shade of red, will provide a solution to this conundrum. He also told us about the possibilities of certain types of plastics being glow in the dark to make sorting plastics even simpler.
Overall the evening was good fun and we met some very interesting and approachable people. We will definitely be making an effort to attend as many of the mingles as possible and would recommend that anyone who has an interest in European Green Capital and wants to find out more should attend one of these evenings too!
One of our main motivations for starting Down and Out in Bristol with Plastic was to figure out where our plastic goes after we’ve put it in the recycling. At the Living City talk we found an answer. Green Warehouse is a company that produces waste bins entirely out of recycled plastic. The company operates from an office in Hengrove and prides itself on it its green credentials. Founder of the company Will and his colleagues were kind enough to tell us a bit about what they do and how Green Warehouse works.