Andrea Rosso, Diesel’s sustainability ambassador, participated in the recent first edition of Genova Jeans in Genoa, Italy. He commented about the experience and explained what Diesel’s next projects are.
Sustainability is a quite new clear aim for Diesel. Could you explain more about it?
We have just started this. We are already implementing it in our core business, which is denim and sets an important direction for its future from a product and social point of view. This is an important aspect that we will further develop by reaching higher targets and spreading it to our whole offer, including our licensed products.
We have also created some groups internally together with SDA Bocconi School of Management, through which–especially from us of Diesel–many interesting ideas have come out. We all have worked and defined a series of different projects that will be expanded and put into practice starting from next year. The preparation of a sustainability report is also part of these projects and, starting from the end of September, we will be launching our new website which will dedicate a significant part to sustainability presenting some data and content related to this aspect and the environmental impact of our production.
What about the product’s aspect?
On a product’s side we have focused our new Diesel Library collection offering a selection of items that will be available for more seasons and are completed with a QR code that explains exactly how many resources were used to produce each piece, along with what treatments and what kind of materials, or what certification each piece has achieved.
Since f/w 2021, we will also offer a capsule made with Candiani Denim’s Coreva, a 100% compostable and biodegradable fabric. For the same season, we will also use Relast, a highly stretchable denim made with elastane’s production waste and biological cotton.
After participating in this event, I like to think that people all over the world are wearing a pair of “Genoa,” not jeans... This experience was especially emotional as it made me feel that Diesel is part of the great tradition of jeans and beyond.
Walking through “The Street of Jeans” I discovered colors, perfumes and languages, but also as our brand’s past history presented in its stores and streets, through past look books, ad campaigns and products, melted with the city’s story, while it also threw a look at the present and future of this piece of clothing.
Was it the first time Diesel worked on a project tied to its past?
Diesel has already been focused on heritage with various projects like, for instance, our Diesel x Diesel project that has taken iconic pieces from our past that we have adapted to modern times, producing them according to much more sustainable criteria than in the past.
As part of Genova Jeans, we kept the exhibition “Diesel’s Denim Heritage: A Walk in Its Archive.” We have selected about 70 pieces from our company’s archive, for a total of 16 outfits–not an easy task as our archive includes about 10,000 pieces plus it was the first time we presented some pieces outside the company.
We presented this special piece within an installation at the entrance of a palace in via del Campo. They were trousers worn by the statue of a shepherd from an ancient crèche. The first examples of jeans are dated to 1567, but what we reproduced belonged to a statue of 1740, some boxy short trousers, not yet looking like a five-pocket jeans. The fabric we used was produced in Italy with weaving machines that respect the old yarn spinning and fabric weaving of denim, according to information provided by accurate historians from Genoa. Its color is not the typical blue we know, but more similar to ecru. It was a great experience learning all this from historians and transposing that from 1700s into 2021 as a Made in Italy piece by Diesel.
We have a great and very good relationship with the city for this edition, but we have to see how Genoa will react and take important decisions to further develop this initiative. The city’s history gives an added value to this project, but it also has a great task and responsibility, and I think it should also start using a more modern and future-minded language. The Genoese people are in love with their history and will surely find new ways for a further evolution of this project.