German brand, Closed, is one of the icon denim brands that have been around for decades. We are delighted to be posting about their part in helping to preserve our planet.
Let’s see what they are telling us about their sustainable denim collection, “A BETTER BLUE”, and most interesting: Scroll down to read more and also learn more about what sustainable denim in fact is all about. For instance, did you know that shrimps’ shells, a waste product from the food industry, could be re-used?
What will the jeans of the future look like?
They’ll definitely be blue – but green too! Now in its second generation, the Closed eco-friendly denim line, A BETTER BLUE, uses sustainable materials as well as innovative dyeing methods and new wash techniques.
A BETTER BLUE is Closed’s sustainable denim line. But what does sustainable mean? Is it better for the planet? Or better for you? Better for the people who produce it?
Or better for us as a company? And what makes denim sustainable? Using organic cotton? Minimizing its carbon footprint? Or less energy, less water and fewer chemicals? Eliminating toxic substances that could come into contact with your skin? Or using production facilities which are close to one another so as to reduce transport mileage?
With A BETTER BLUE, Closed is ticking all of these boxes. Making jeans is a process with many steps. And to make sure that our A BETTER BLUE jeans are as sustainable as possible, we make sure every single step is as sustainable as possible. We use sustainable materials (e.g. recycled cotton), sustainable dyeing methods (e.g. Kitotex) and sustainable wash techniques (e.g. ozone washing) to minimize the amount of energy, water and chemicals needed.
Almost all of Closed’s denim production partners are based in Italy (even the ones making our buttons or studs), keeping distances as short as possible. And when the
jeans are finished, we ship them by lorry and not by plane from Italy to our warehouses in Germany.
A BETTER BLUE has been combining traditional craftsmanship with innovative processes since its launch in 2018.
Each pair of jeans is handmade in Italy and Closed has used innovative wash and dyeing methods since day one. Now, the range is being expanded with fabrics made from more sustainable raw materials, such as cellulose fibers and recycled cotton, saving even more water and energy. Organic cotton is also used, which is produced without the use of pesticides. Besides jeans, our Eco-friendly line for the f/w 2019 season will include denim jackets, dresses, skirts and accessories for the first time. This means that sustainable products will account for a growing proportion of the collection. The collection will include 14 products for women and 21 products for men.
How to produce denim in a more Eco-friendly way?
Thanks to the Kitotex dyeing process used and the low-impact washes alone, many A BETTER BLUE products consume 65 per cent fewer chemicals, 50 per cent less water and 25 per cent less energy than a conventionally manufactured garment. The jeans made of Tencel™ x Refibra™ fibers and recycled cotton also do without the use of virgin cotton, reducing water consumption by about another 2,500 liters per pair.
Material Washing & Dyeing
What’s next for A BETTER BLUE?
The new A BETTER BLUE fabrics at a glance:
• Cellulose fibres (e.g. Tencel™, lyocell/modal) from sustainable resources. Raw materials are sourced from sustainably managed woodlands – which do not need irrigation, fertilizers or pesticides. Furthermore, the fibers are manufactured in a closed process whereby the water and solvents are almost completely reused.
• Tencel™ x Refibra™. This special lyocell fibre is made using both wood pulp and 30 per cent recycled cotton waste, making it by far the most Eco-friendly fiber used for A BETTER BLUE.
• Recycled cotton. This is used to reduce the proportion of virgin cotton in the denims – and therefore also the amount of water, CO2 and pesticides associated with
• Recycled elastane comes from reusable remnants left over from the manufacturing process. Branded as ROICA™ stretch fiber, it forms part of several Closed denims.
• Organic cotton is made using 70 per cent less water and 60 per cent less energy than conventionally grown cotton. Neither genetically modified seeds nor toxic chemicals are used in its production. Growing organic cotton does not have a negative impact on farmland; it also generates fewer harmful emissions. Closed does not use chlorine, potassium permanganate, conventional stone-washing techniques or other environmentally damaging processes to dye and wash A BETTER BLUE products. Gentler alternatives are used instead: bioenzymes, ozone or low-impact oxidants are utilized for washes. Used looks are also created or accelerated with the aid of lasers. All of these techniques also minimize the need for water and chemicals. The Eco-friendlier wash process used for A BETTER BLUE products is analysed using the independent evaluation system EIM (Environmental Impact Measurement developed by the company Jeanologia and has to qualify as “low impact” on this scale.
The following dyeing methods are used:
• Easy-to-fade. When this process is used, the dye pigments do not penetrate deep into the yarn. Instead, they remain on the surface of the fibers, substantially
reducing the amount of water, energy and chemicals needed to create faded, vintage looks.
• Kitotex ®. The raw material for this patented technology* is the natural polyme chitosan, which is found in shrimps’ shells (a waste product from the food industry) Kitotex ® is 100% biodegradable and free from micro-plastic.
• The nitrogen method is a particularly intensive dyeing method, which means that just two dye baths are needed instead of seven. This reduces the use of chemicals.
• Pre-reduced indigo is a sustainable alternative to the indigo powder which is conventionally used. It more than halves the quantity of sodium hydroxide and sodium hydrosulphite needed. The innovative techniques used during the production of each A BETTER BLUE article are printed inside the garment.
Closed is currently working on a sustainability report which will contain extensive information about its sustainability activities. This will be published at closed.com. In spring/summer 2020, A BETTER BLUE will make up an even larger proportion of the Closed collections, which will also feature additional innovative materials.
You can shop for CLOSED on their website.