How can the latest design and technology help to create wear without waste? And what can we all do to reduce the impact of throwaway fashion?
Made to measure
Normally, to make a jacket you cut a pattern out of cloth which leaves around 15% of the roll left over as oddly shaped offcuts. But this jacket is different – no cloth was cut…
Fashion technologist Siddhartha Upadhyaya invented a new technique where the different pieces of this jacket were woven to be exactly the right shape and size. This means no fabric gets wasted.
Hi tech, low waste
Siddhartha Upadhyaya calls his technology Direct Panel on Loom (DPOL).
‘It consists of a computer attached to a loom,’ he explains. ‘You upload your design and the loom weaves fabric panels according to the dimensions you put into the computer. It’s simple to then sew the pieces together to make your finished item of clothing.’
There are added advantages to Siddhartha’s new technique. Because it reduces the volume of fabric manufactured, it cuts down on energy, water, dyes and other chemicals used to make fabric, many of which are highly toxic. Siddhartha Upadhyaya explains:
‘DPOL technology saves 70–80% of water compared to standard methods, which will help to conserve natural resources and reduce the harmful effects on the environment.’
All in one
Siddhartha is proud of his technology because it combines the weaving, fabric-cutting and patterning stages all into one process. This also saves time and money. And it can include any decorative pattern and match it with the cut and shape of the clothing, a huge benefit for designers. ‘We are just beginning to find our feet, but I hope that Direct Panel on Loom will become the standard method of manufacture in the future. Sustainability is a big deal and I believe DPOL offers part of the solution.’