Home Featured Unspun Makes Fully Recycled Cotton Jean, Italy Reclaims Linen Making – WWD

Unspun Makes Fully Recycled Cotton Jean, Italy Reclaims Linen Making – WWD

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Unspun Makes Fully Recycled Cotton Jean, Italy Reclaims Linen Making – WWD


Getting Unspun: Though brands today are experimenting with anywhere from 25 percent to 75 percent recycled cotton content, denim brand Unspun has done the unthinkable.

A recent collaborator with Collina Strada at New York Fashion Week (as well as Weekday and Pangaia in earlier lines), Unpsun’s latest style — the vintage black jeans — are made from 100-percent pre-consumer recycled cotton. The jeans retail for between $85 to $215 and are sold on Unspun’s website. While conventionally recycled cotton textiles often have to be mixed with virgin material to maintain their integrity, this jean is different. 

“One of the biggest concerns with any recycled garment is that you’re shortening the fiber length,” said Beth Esponnette, founder of Unspun denim. She said the company produces its latest denim with material waste from the Kipas fabric mill in Turkey without compromising the fiber length or garment performance.

“When you open the curtain and look behind the scenes, it’s pretty depressing to see the exploitation and the waste,” she added. “We did a lot of digging into why and the way we produce, globalization drove us to hit numbers and economies of scale. In order to make those orders, we’d have long lead times.”

The company recently hit a major benchmark — selling 10,000 pants for its direct-to-consumer line.

Due to its proprietary body-scanning technology to measure and manufacture jeans, Unspun’s model emits 42 percent less CO2 per pair of jeans than traditional manufacturers. Unspun, which sells custom-fit denim, has a 5 percent rate of return and a 95 percent fit rate due to its body-scan technology.

Made in Italy Linen Bows in Milan: Linificio Canapificio Nazionale linen and hemp yarn maker has brought to life a new 100 percent Made in Italy-grown and spun linen which has been a few years in the making.

The short supply chain linen yarn named “Lino d’Italia,” or “Italian Linen” is fully traceable via blockchain technology and is grown and spun in Villa d’Almé, a village within the Val Brembana valley around Bergamo, a one-hour drive from Milan.

The Gruppo Marzotto-owned yarn specialist reestablished its first linen plantation in the neighboring area of Valle di Astino in 2019. Those cultivations had been absent from the region, and Italy at large, for several decades since local linen and hemp producers outsourced them to other European countries.

The high-end lightweight linen, which is available in natural ecru and white, is to be presented Wednesday at Filo, a two-day Milan-based yarn and fiber trade show.

Linificio Canapificio Nazionale currently boasts 16 hectares of linen plantation across Italy, securing the production of around 16 tons of yarn per year. The company’s ambition is to grow that quota to 60 hectares by 2025. It has also pledged to support farmers eager to convert current plantations to linen ones, bearing all the business risks.

This move reflects the firms’ “benefit” status, a label that by Italian law is bestowed on firms committed to generating a positive social and environmental impact. 

Linificio Canapificio Nazionale’s linen plantation located in Villa D’Almè, Bergamo.

Courtesy Photo.