The latest edition of Kingpins24 Global Show, held online October 19-21, 2021, presented a vast series of experiences, initiatives and opinions from the international denim show and focused on different themes such as circularity, zero-waste manufacturing and design, new eco-friendly fibers, virtual reality interactive presentations and more sustainable initiatives.
Among others, Kingpins24 hosted the Indigo Museum, a project started in 2019. But it was more prominent for this edition as it involved various companies presenting their projects within the first day of the show to highlight, bring fun and promote educational activities while involving mills and artisans.
The SPIN OFF selected some quotes from the most interesting projects and initiatives of the three-day webinar.
Ampelio Del Lago, Artistic Fabric Mills:
“Zero-waste manufacturing is not a dream and is very near as a lot of new technology is available. In order to reach zero waste, companies have to start a policy whose aim is to focus on that in every step from fiber and chemical selection to production and beyond. Among our main focuses there is recycling, an important aspect for our company since a while. For instance, as polyester is not recyclable, our main goal is to eliminate it entirely because it is not circular.
This year we discovered a new polymer with which we can use as weft for 7.5 oz legging but also for typical super stretch denim with over 50% of elasticity without any growth or recovery issue.
Talking about chemicals, I don’t see many innovations around, but we have started using the first ever recycled indigo dyeing. We collect it from our production waste and reconvert it in a virgin dyestuff and, this way, we can obtain almost all the indigo shades we have in our portfolio with it. We are also studying ways to recover used colored weft that would otherwise go to landfill.”
Besim Ozek, Bossa:
“For Bossa zero-waste manufacturing means focusing on improving in terms of chemical and water recycling. For instance, speaking about water recycling, if in the past we used to throw away about 6,000 tons of water per day, today we have reached zero waste thanks to our water recycling activity. We also believe in the importance of recycling goods, as we aim to use more and more recycled fibers for the production of our fabrics.”
Kristina Berrios, Coats:
“Coats is a specialized yarn and accessory manufacturer that has been existing for 250 years. It has recently launched Denim Visualiser, a digital tool through which designers can see the effect of sewing threads when used for sewing jeans before the garment is produced. They can choose fabric, thread, finishing and washing effects and see the final result without waiting for the garment to be ready, while saving time and emissions related to the production of the item.”
Kara Nicholas, Cone Denim:
“Cone is launching a new collaboration with Endrime and Jeanologia to bring a new way of thinking. We hope it’s highly inspirational and a call to action. While offering a collection that can be sold, we want to explore zero-waste pattern cutting. We used removable trims, sustainable labels and 100% cotton sewing threads…plus every bit of remaining fabric was not spoiled as entirely used for patching or sewing.”
Mohsin Sajid, Endrime for Cone Denim:
“It was a honor for me working at the first true zero-waste commercial denim collection Cone Denim X Endrime Ltd x Jeanologia made with Ellen McArthur Foundation denim fabrics by Cone Denim.
Endrime designed ten different garments with a number of different fabrics from Cone Denim–selvedge and non-selvedge. We hope to carry on this Zero-Waste Philosophy going forward. By the end of this collection we came out with so many more ideas and hope to design better. We also figured out algorithm how to fit a five-pocket jeans on any size fabric. We will be publishing more future finding together with our friends at Cone Denim.”
Marco Lucietti, Isko:
“What the pandemic has left us is a much different situation as consumers are our customers and our industry is talking much about sharing. And that’s the approach that has been driving our recent collaboration with Soorty. We decided to sign this agreement with them as a new way for sharing and collaborating among industry leaders. Isko Future Face is a patented technology that is delivering a product that is knitted but has the aspect of an authentic look woven denim. Soorty and Isko have reached this agreement, which is only related to the US market and only for some specific customers. We are very proud as two global denim powerhouses joining forces instead of fighting for a small piece of cake are trying to enlarge the opportunities in the market sets a very good direction for our industry and hopefully some more similar ones will happen in the future.”
Asad Soorty, Soorty:
“We and Isko share the same values and vision of the industry. And we are happy we could take this step and choose not to be competitors but collaborators. This agreement is the first one of this kind. Soorty will be producing the fabric according to this technology and the garments, which is outstanding.
The garments we will produce for this collaboration can be a new standard and a staple in everyone’s wardrobe as they feel like sweatpants but look like authentic jeans.”
Tricia Carey, Lenzing:
“Tencel Lyocell was launched in the 1990s and since then much experimentation and many new developments were offered within its evolution. Among various insiders who worked with it asked us if we could reduce this fiber’s shine. Now Lenzing is proud to launch the new matte Tencel branded lyocell fibers. This new Tencel variant and fiber type is specially designed to scatter light and permanently diminish sheen in denim applications thanks to the addition of special mineral substances, while it continues to maintain its sustainable characteristics intact. Thanks to it we are setting a new standard for indigo applications. For this launch we collaborated with global mill partners, Advance Denim and Panther Denim/Tat Fung from China, Artistic Fabric Mills Pvt. Ltd from Pakistan, Arvind Limited and KG Denim Limited from India, Kipas Denim from Turkey and Textil Santanderina from Spain.”
Aydan Tuzun, Naveena Denim Mills:
“We know that the increasing product returns are a huge problem for the industry, for consumers and the environment. So, in order to solve that, we thought we should have focused mostly on size and fit.
Together with The Lycra Company’s Lycra Adaptiv, we have developed Self-Fit, a technology with the special one-size-fits-more characteristic that offers a very effective cure for return numbers due to sizing issues.
Thanks to yarn engineering, and Lycra T400 fibers, our new family of fabrics minimizes the level of constraint against the body, providing an amazing level of flexibility, comfort and freedom to move.
We also wanted to give a message to everyone about size-inclusivity and body positivity. For this through Self-Fit fabrics, our message is: ‘Don't focus on fitting in, focus on standing out by being yourself!’ We hope our products will inspire consumers and brands alike.”
Salli Deighton, NDL:
“Considered NDL From Fibre to Finish is my first collaboration with a mill. This group of fabrics is made up of two categories–Enhanced Performance and Friendly Fibers. Enhanced Performance addresses some performance of bestselling sculpting stretch articles. All of its seven fabrics include fibers from 20% post-consumer waste and use the Ciclo additive. We also reuse caustic and water during the dyeing process. All our denim is superficially ring-dyed to enable efficiencies in laundry. Fabric performance is not compromised and all our fabrics have excellent growth and recovery; they last long and can be used for garments aimed at all body types and genders. All fabrics' washes have green scores from Tonello, Metro o Jeanologia’s EIM.
Friendly Fibers is a small range of five low stretch denims made with a content of linen, hemp or Tencel. Jeans samples produced with these fabrics use sewing threads by Coats, including a thread made with Hempcel, a special mix of hemp and Tencel, removable Prym buttons, Rudolf’s Offuel oil-free treating chemicals and Tonello laser and ozone treatments.”
Andrea Venier, Officina+39:
“The water crisis remains one of the top issues for humanity, and 90% of the world's natural disasters are related to water. Despite this, the fashion industry is still deeply rooted in a linear approach–‘make, use, dispose’–and it is also gradually trying to redesign a better sustainable model, where circularity should represent the new sustainability not only when it comes to the materials, but also to water.
With this aim in mind Officina+39 has developed Aqualess Mission, a process suitable for conventional machines that leads to a 75% reduction of the water typically used in denim and garment laundry processes, using a waterless technology and saving costs for producers.
It’s necessary that companies develop water management strategies. As the ISO 14000 is related to environmental management, I believe that governments, brands and organizations should think about an ISO only related to water management. In this way, every company can understand how much value can be generated in the medium-term and how much money it could save by investing in this kind of technologies.”
Sedef Uku Aki, Orta Anadolu:
“We know that one-to-one meetings are the best and make a difference. However, the pandemic made us realize how unsustainable it is for us traveling to another country for a single meeting usually going back and forth in the same day, plus the carbon footprint and the time loss. Because we produce denim fabrics and our customers definitely need to touch and see the fabric, we realized we needed another medium to do those presentations and VR (Virtual Reality) offered us a whole series of experience in that sense.”
Zennure Danisman, Orta Anadolu:
“For this our Orta Scenic Route immerses users in a 3D world of travel, stories and possibilities in a gaming ‘zenfulness’ experience. We invite our customers to always take our ‘scenic route’ in our VR denim journey, an industry first experience that combines the wonder of traveling in a hot air balloon with gaming gestures that let them explore Orta’s leading denim fabrics. It is a special 3D experience created in collaboration with Muse VR. Together with it, we have created a 360-degree freedom experience which lets them virtually walk through the space, move around and be immersed in the hyper-real including Turkey’s famous destinations like Capadocia, Caravanserai and, among others, Kaiseri, where the Orta factory is based and where our customers can see our whole denim collection presentation.”
Alberto De Conti, Rudolf Group:
“It is very urgent for all players in the textile supply chain to start thinking of alternative, renewable raw materials. From this perspective, chemical companies that are often perceived as a problem are in fact a big part of a possible solution.
We have developed Offuel, a new product series, a progressive array of chemical auxiliaries for denim finishing consisting, by at least 90%, of alternatives to crude oil along with components based on recycled materials. We are offering 11 finishing auxiliaries made from different renewable raw materials from substances of botanical origin or produced through biotechnologies; made with salts, water, basic acids and alkalis; but also substances recycled from waste of biological origin, or recycled from plastics–either post-consumer, or industrial waste.
These substances can be used mostly to treat natural fibers like cotton, linen and similar ones, and can achieve a large array of looks–from dark to light. They were all cleared by Bluesign and are all compliant with the Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex.”
Vivian Wang, The Kingpins Show:
“Back in 2010, our founder, Andrew Olah, identified how the denim industry could be a filthy and wasteful business. Over the past ten years, our effort was to promote positive change by fostering best practices at several levels. We provided a guide to all of our exhibitors on how to tackle the denim industry. We set regulation, standards and participation rules and advice at the same time that we expect them to uphold. Just in 2019 nearly 100% of our Amsterdam exhibitors have become CSR certified and we are still preaching for each one to register at ZDHC and follow chemical management system and wastewater guidelines. We want our exhibitors to prove their commitment with best practices, so they are already engaging in those SDGs relevant for manufacturing mills, and we aim that these SDGs can become the new participation rules for all for the next eventual live shows. But change doesn’t occur in a single day. For this we involve exhibitor by exhibitor, factory by factory by providing guidelines, education, training and celebrate the best in class in collaboration with organizations like the UN. We are not only encouraging to become better in the denim scene, but would like to be a reference for other segments, for the fashion segment and even other types of industry as we think that innovation is sustainability.”
Fuat Gozacan, Wiser Projects:
“Wiser Wash, is a patented and award-winning ozone process that saves a significant amount of water as with traditional methods 60 liters of water are required for treating a pair of jeans, while Wiser Wash only uses 28 liters. We could even increase this 53% percent saving up to 92% thanks to wastewater recycling systems.
We think that joining forces with different players in the industry brings incredible growth. For this, Wiser Wash as first productive partner in Turkey launching this strategy has then enlarged its collaborations with PPJ in Vietnam, Arvind in India and Elleti in Italy, Romania and Tunisia, all to be regularly audited by Control Union.
Wiser Wash Turkey has also started production with Wox, a new system consisting of an ozone drum and a generator, that makes the process smart and traceable, and that analyzes and identifies possible anomalies. Wox also shortens the treatment cycle duration by 40% and increases the production capacity of the facility by 66%. It also leads the manufacturer to build a better up-scaling strategy, while it also deliberately maximizes environmentally operational safety and ozone usage.”