The latest editions of Munich Fabric Start and Bluezone, which took place respectively this week on Tuesday to Thursday and Tuesday and Wednesday, registered a significant attendance and appreciation by their visitors. In particular Bluezone drew visitors not only from the DACH areas, but also from other countries, including the US.
“By the combination of Bluezone and Keyhouse as an interactive and highly topical innovation center we have created a unique and vibrant hub, which keeps gaining international attraction and profile,” said Sebastian Klinder, managing director, Munich Fabric Start. “We have succeeded in designing a highly targeted and focused format for a fast-paced industry, which sets completely new standards.”
A meeting point for the industry
The show organized seminars and roundtables focused on numerous interesting and critical issues. An interesting initiative, for instance, was the presentation of the “River Blue-Can Fashion Change the Planet?” documentary film focused on high-impact social and environmental damages caused by the fashion industry globally. A roundtable followed after the screening. Participants were denim guru Adriano Goldschmied, Lenzing’s Tricia Carey, Tintex’s Ana Silva, Jeanologia's Stefano Tessarolo and Simone Seisl’s Textile Exchange. Goldschmied said: “I think it is time we focus on new game-changing products and ideas. A zero-cotton and zero water jeans–that can already be produced–can be true game changers.” He continued: “I personally can say that some things that we have seen in this movie are changing. For instance, I have bought a laundry in China and it doesn’t resemble at all to what this movie is showing. Much is slowly changing, for instance in China.” Everyone on the panel felt that it now everyone’s task is to enlighten the industry and market and increase one’s own commitment to bettering things.
Another inspiring and instructive conference was held by Mohsin Sajid, creative director Endrime and denim design specialist. He explored the theme “What makes a good jean?” The designer presented some of the key aspects of making of great jeans by analyzing the history of jeanswear and workwear while reinventing it with new eyes and fresh creativity. Other hot topics of discussion during the show included robotics, automation in fashion and next-generation smart textiles
Ecology in the spotlight
Out of its total 1,800 collections from more than 1,000 leading international suppliers, the show hosted more than 80 exhibitors offering sustainable fabrics and accessories in various areas of the show including Key House, Foyer and Blue Zone, all living proof that great attention is devoted to the environment–even if it is now apparently considered the topic every company needs to include in its own collection.
Umorfil is a new fiber developed by Taiwan company Camangi. It is made by recycling fish scales and adding wood pulp. The result is a new eco-friendly non-allergic supersoft touch fiber.
Candiani presented its new Re-Gen Denim, a denim composed of 50% Lenzing Refibra fibers and 50% recycled fibers to both the warp and the weft. “By offering this fabric we have achieved a new denim that employs not one single new fiber of fresh new cotton, but only regenerated ones,” said Simon Giuliani, marketing manager. According to Levi Strauss studies from 2015, for every pair of jeans that is produced 2,565 liters of water are wasted. According to estimates, a conventional denim requires 20 liters of water and 500 grams of chemicals for weaving the fabric and 70 liters of water plus 120 grams of chemicals for the washing phase. Candiani’s new fabric Re-Gen uses zero liters of water for growing the cotton and producing the fiber, 10 liters of water and 150g of chemicals for weaving and 12 liters of water only and 50 grams of chemicals for washing. By employing Kitotex and Indigo Juice technology producing this fabric brings a drastic reduction of 30% energy, 50% water and 70% chemicals.
Portuguese specialized knit/jersey producer Tintex has switched up its whole selection of raw materials by focusing on new generation cottons such as BCI cotton, Ecotec by Marchi & Fildi, GOTS certified organic cotton and Supima. It also introduced a new warm-sensitive fabric that changes color according to body and external temperature changes, and new sustainable cork-based coated fabrics.
Lycra T400 and Coolmax have both developed new fibers that are in part eco-friendly and incorporate a new Ecomade Technology. Both employ a part of their fibers made with recycled PET bottles. Lycra T400 also includes plant-based material while Coolmax is made from 97% recycled resources.
Orta has launched its Exoart fabric that is irregularly dyed–similar to traditional ikat fabric techniques, made with a new eco-dyeing technology that can help save water, reduce solvent use, chemicals and energy and guarantee cleaner waste water. In addition, Bossa offered its Dye Art new colored denim selection obtained by employing less water.
Kassim Denim presented a superheavy selvedge ring-ring fabric weighing 37 oz and also launched a series of jacquard denims designed in Germany. Calik believes in its Smart Stretch fabric, a circular 100 bi-stretch fabric that in addition to 360-degree comfort offers a silky soft hand.
Artistic Milliners has developed its new stretch Prenchy, a cool and effortlessly chic fabric for chinos added with transparent or colored coatings that lend a special hand-feel and look to fabrics.
Among the other new initiatives was Paolo Gnutti's PG, a new fabric collection and company. The Italian creative mind and entrepreneur, previous co-owner of ITV, is now president and 70% owner of his new project together with denim specialist Berto and Italian fabric manufacturer Eurotessile–both of which hold 15% of the new company.
Modern commuters are cool
The trend of urban commuting continues to play an important part. And the show presented some interesting new projects and products.
Dyneema, the ultra-thin abrasion-resistant fiber, has launched a collab capsule collection with NDL-Naveena Denim LTD, an innovative denim manufacturer, and Saat, a German design studio and fashion brand. Together they offer some interesting new silhouette pieces that mix workwear and biker apparel inspiration for new modern and comfy menswear looks. BMW Motorrad company partnered with the project and presented a motobike model during the show.
MIC, a sewing thread manufacturer, launched a new thread that reflects light.
The show’s Hightex Award went to a Soorty jacket made with a sustainable water-repellent material. This fabric is produced with 50% organic cotton, 42% Tencel, 3% abrasion-resistant fiber Dyneema and 5% post-consumer waste materials. It is dyed with post-consumer waste and natural indigo. This jacket was chosen as an expression of new modern consumption patterns that aim to meet the needs of city commuters and also for the market’s increased attention to the environment.