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Fabric Magic: Unusual Items Made Into Fabric

January 9, 2015

1. Fermented fashion? Wine not! : Micro‘be’

Who would have imagined a fabric that could grow itself? And what more, from a bottle of wine? Micro’be’, invented by textile artist Donna Franklin and scientist Gary Cass, is essentially a bacterial fermented seamless garment created by living microbes that ferment wine. The colour of the resultant fabric can be varied depending on the type of wine used.


2. FaSoynating fabric: Soy Silk

Soy Silk is an environmentally-friendly fibre made from tofu manufacturing waste. Soy protein is liquefied and then extruded into fibers that are then spun into threads. It is also referred to as “vegetable cashmere”.

3. Go loco for coco(nuts)! : Coconut Fibre

 The fibre in the coconut shell (also known as coir) is natural and renewable, making it an excellent eco-friendly fabric. Boasting advantages such as odour adsorption, UV protection and effective evaporative cooling, it is no wonder that Cocona Inc. has recently developed a line of clothing made of this fibre.



4. Coffee breaks new grounds : S.Café

With the gaining popularity of turning waste into eco fabric, there is now fabric, patented as S.Café, made out of old coffee grounds. The resultant fabric is soft, light, flexible and breathable, making it a great choice for sportswear textile. To top it off, it only takes the grounds from one medium cup of coffee to make enough material for two T-shirts!


5. Under the sea(weed) : SeaCell

SeaCell is a cellulose-based fiber made from a mixture of seaweed, wood pulp and algae. The fabric is softer and more breathable than cotton. Research also suggests that SeaCell improves blood flow to the skin and skin cell regeneration, as well as transfers some of nutrients from the seaweed to the skin. Most of the items made from SeaCell are bras, underwear or bedding.


6. A-maize-ing fabric : Ingeo Fiber

We’re all familiar with corn as a staple in our meals, but what about in our clothing? The corn fabric is produced by taking the sugar from corn and putting it through a process called polymerization, turning sugar into plastic. These plastic strands are then used in clothing and bedding and apparently requires 68% less energy than polyester or nylon.



7. IntereSting invention : STINGplus

Scientists at De Montfort University, UK developed a fabric using stinging nettle plant. Known as STINGplus, it has been heralded as “the most sustainable fabric ever” as its strength is greater than cotton, has great fire retardant properties and has extreme growth without pesticides without requiring much water. It has earned an award for being 100% renewable.



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