ECO-SPOTLIGHT: PHARRELL WILLIAMS x BIONIC YARN
Pharrell Williams is not only a music mogul, he’s also earning major points for introducing recycled plastic to the fashion industry. Pharrell joined forces with co-founders Tyson Toussant and Tim Coombs, as the Creative Director of Bionic Yarn, a company that’s made a huge impact by developing yarn out of plastic waste collected from our oceans. The company’s patented Bionic Yarn is used to make textiles and materials, which can in turn be used in fashion, luggage, furniture and even art!
Since Bionic Yarn entered the fashion industry, retail giants including Topshop, Cole Haan, Moncler and Timberland have incorporated Bionic Yarn products into their respective lines. Most recently, Pharrell has teamed up with denim authority, G-Star Raw, and Parley on a collaborative project to transform ocean plastic into denim and launch Raw for the Oceans, a clothing line made from recycled ocean plastic.
The collection is extremely versatile, ranging from sweatshirts to hats to G Star’s signature jeans to - our personal favorite, t-shirts that ask, “WTF are you doing to my Oceans.”
If you’re anything like us, you’re probably wondering how Bionic Yarn fabric is made. So here are the details, courtesy of the RAW for the Oceans project:
STEP ONE: Plastic is gathered from oceans and shorelines around the world.
STEP TWO: Collected ocean plastic is broken down into small pieces and then shredded into fibers.
STEP THREE: These plastic fibers are then spun into core yarn and helixed with cotton to create Bionic Yarn.
STEP FOUR: The Bionic Yarn product is woven or knitted into textiles or fabric.
Despite the fact that it’s made from recycled ocean plastic, Bionic Yarn looks and acts exactly like normal thread, so you won’t have to compromise on quality in order to help our planet.
The invention of Bionic Yarn is a huge step forward in tackling the issue of ocean plastic pollution. According to an article published in Science journal, between 4.8 and 12.7 million tons of plastic entered our oceans in 2010 alone. The impact of plastic on sea life is more serious than meets the eye. Over 660 species are documented to have been affected by some type of contact with plastic in the ocean, ranging from entanglement to ingestion. This is a global crisis that requires us to act now to protect the biodiversity of our oceans. Our careless disposal of plastic has caused millions of tons of plastic waste to wind up in our oceans, affecting everything from zooplankton to whales to the fish that ends up in local sushi bars and on our dinner plates. Collaborations like RAW for the Oceans project are doing their part to protect our oceans and the sea life beneath the surface.
Bionic Yarn’s commitment to preserving our oceans and protecting the future of our planet is inspiring. Not only that, but they’ve also created a product aligned with our mantra - that you shouldn’t have to compromise style to make a difference in the world. We hope Pharrell’s eco-pioneering inspires you to think twice before throwing away that plastic water bottle.
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