This month Candiani Denim and Denham are launching a new collaboration jeans selection using Coreva Stretch Technology, the first biodegradable stretch plant-based yarns. This technology replaces the commonly used synthetic and petrol-based elastomers without compromising elasticity, recovery and durability. Moreover, the stretch denim obtained by using it is free from plastics and microplastics and–when added to biodegradable cotton or other biomaterials–is bio-degradable.
The new bio-stretch denim is available in a selvedge variant as Bio Stretch-Selvedge selection exclusively from Denham's new "Life is Movement" collection, a line of the Dutch premium jeans brand that offers the latest innovations in low impact denim. The range includes limited and individually numbered jeans in its York and Razor styles for men sold respectively at €279.95 and €219.95.
Alberto Candiani, owner, Candiani Denim, described how technology was born and developed, and what characterizes it most.
Why did you develop this new stretch technology?
In a world where resources are diminishing and landfills are overflowing with discarded garments, it’s our duty to look for renewable resources, in addition to biodegradable and compostable materials. Denim has to take the lead as the indigo flag of this revolution. We are not doing this because there is a demand, but because it's the right thing to do.
How did you discover it?
This particular time I did not really discover the technology; I have envisioned this first and literally invented its technical application together with my R&D team. It took four years and this is also why we patented the Coreva technology. It all started in 2015 with me shopping for cold cuts in a local delicatessen. I always noticed salamis were wrapped into this thick bouncy yarn. That got me curious. I found out it was a special natural rubber which could package alimentary goods due to its properties and it was also biodegradable. But, of course, that chunky yarn couldn't work for us. Together with our suppliers we had to come up with a smart vulcanization process to refine the rubber yarn without compromising the elastomer itself and its properties. At the same time we internally studied the actual corespun technology in order to put this inside our cotton yarns prior to be woven into our denim. Even finishing had to be customized to this new type of fabric, but we finally engineered and fine-tuned the right product with solid physicals and amazing performances.
Is this denim (and therefore jeans) more expensive than a regular stretch denim, or other sustainable stretch denim fabrics or jeans?
Yes, it is certainly more expensive. Right now I would say 30% more expensive than a regular stretch denim. We are looking to contain this in the early future by scaling up the production and optimizing the process itself.
Is the use of Coreva stretch technology requiring particular attention, for instance, when washing or treating jeans?
No. Not at all. That is why it took us a little longer than what initially expected, but we really wanted to create bulletproof innovation not only in sustainable terms but also under the performance aspect. And–don't forget–biodegradable doesn't mean the fabric will be falling apart anytime soon. Coreva's durability and longevity is as strong as 100% cotton fabrics.
Could this new stretch fiber be used for any denim’s weight and construction?
Pretty much. We have only developed 13 oz. and 15 oz. at the moment with a different range of elasticity, from comfort to super-stretch. Lighter weights will come in early 2020 part of a wider Coreva collection.
Do you think it could become the alternative stretch denim in the jeanswear market?
Of course. We want it to be an alternative. Denim with Coreva will be recyclable, upcyclable and, most importantly, biodegradable. The real issue today is landfill and we want to offer a tangible solution even when it comes to stretch denim which nowadays is way bigger than 100% cotton.