April 30, 2019 | News & Updates

T-shirts Made from Recycled T-shirts!

We’ve noticed that fashion brands really do seem to be making an effort to lessen their carbon footprints and we’re all for it. It feels like we’re seeing more and more headlines about companies developing innovative new processes, new sustainable fabrics, as well as finding creative ways to recycle existing clothing.

Marine Layer, a company known for their super cozy t-shirts, have put their money where their mouth is and invested in a process to recycle clothing their customers send to them and then turn them into new t-shirts. It isn’t exactly cost-effective yet, but their team isn’t afraid of blazing a trail to make it easier for those coming after them. They believe that they can perfect the process further to make it cheaper, motiving other brands to jump on-board and start recycling fabrics as well.

Forbes recently published an article about Marine Layer and their journey to their new recycled t-shirt line:

The material is soft, in line with Marine Layer’s focus as a brand to produce the softest tees possible. This was achieved by “sueding,” a term used in the industry to scrub the fiber against a scratchy surface; the friction, thus, produces a smoother result. Much like exfoliating, one could say.

Marine Layer partnered with Spanish company, Recover, to create this line: a company that’s been in existence for 70 years, dating back to 1947 and upcycling textile waste since then — long before the term sustainability even came into the modern lexicon. “They started doing this during World War II to be more efficient, and repurpose textiles,” Natenshon adds.

The article goes on to discuss how difficult it is to be sustainably-minded in the fashion industry, but that they are committed to trying so that others can see the possibilities:

“…in the next two years, Marine Layer wants to have Re-Spun fabrics constitute 50 percent of their collection. The initial collection of 8 is retro-inspired; without any new dying processes introduced into the process, they’ve stayed with colors [that] came out of the recycling process.

Ultimately does this model work economically for more companies to replicate?

“So far, this whole process is quite costly for us. I hope it becomes cost effective soon. But we just had to take a leap of faith and invest in it up front,” [Michael] Natenshon [Marine Layer’s CEO] admits.

He’s hoping that it becomes something more mainstream with other brands taking notice though of the possibilities with recycling textile waste. He’s keen to share their process, and make it easier for others in the industry to replicate.

Some businesses assume that consumers don’t really care that much about sustainability, so they don’t spend the money to find sustainable solutions, but that simply isn’t true. At Parkers, we know that our customers do care about the environment, which is why we offer multiple green cleaning options. Learn more about our green clothing care.

Marine Layers agrees. In the article, they talk about how their customers like to be involved:

Consumers, he argues, are hungry for solutions. “People want to participate. They want to help, participate.”

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