SUSTAINABLE FABRIC & MATERIAL INDEX
Good design begins with a conscious foundation, which is why we use an increasing number of sustainable materials and fabrics to make our collections. From Tencel to recycled hemp, the smarter choices we make when it comes to fabrics, the better impact we will have on the environment.
Read on to learn more about the eco-conscious fabrics we use.
COTTON FROM THE BETTER COTTON INITIATIVE (BCI)
What is BCI Cotton? It is cotton which is grown under the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), the world's largest cotton sustainability programme, which works with farmers and cotton producers to change farming practices. The four main pillars of BCI focus on reducing the environmental impact of cotton production; improving the livelihoods and economic development in cotton-producing nations; improving commitment to and the flow of BCI cotton throughout the global supply chain, and ensuring the credibility and sustainability of the BCI.
In 2019, 50% of our denim jeans were made with BCI cotton, and 27% of DENHAM's entire collection contained BCI cotton.
ORGANIC COTTON - GLOBAL ORGANIC TEXTILE STANDARD (GOTS)
What is organic cotton, and how is it different from conventional cotton? The organic cotton we use in our collections is grown in compliance with the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), the global leading textile processing standard for organic fibres, including ecological and social criteria, supported by independent certification of the whole textile supply chain. This means that GOTS organic cotton is grown free from pesticides and chemicals, with fair labour practices, with up to 70% less water and without the use of GMO. The cotton standard also helps promote organic agriculture around the world and is one of the reasons DENHAM chooses to use these fibres in its collection.
In 2019 6% of our total collection and 11% of our denim jeans contained GOTS cotton. 19.4% of our denim collection for Spring/Summer 2020 contains organic cotton. We aim to increase our use of sustainable materials, including organic cotton, each season.
ORGANIC COTTON - ORGANIC CONTENT STANDARD (OCS)
In addition to using GOTS organic cotton, we also use OCS organic cotton. The Organic Content Standard applies to any non-food related products, which contains between 95% and 100% organic material. This independent certification verifies the presence, as well as the amount of organic materials, in the final product and tracks the flow of raw cotton from its source to the final products.
DENHAM aims to increase the percentage of certified cotton (organic, BCI, and recycled) used in its entire collections to 50% by 2025.
TENCEL / LYOCELL
Considered to be one of the greenest fibres in the world, Tencel/ Lyocell is a form of rayon made from sustainable wood sources. Developed by Lenzing AG, Tencel/ Lyocell is produced in a closed-loop manufacturing process with minimal impact on the environment that transforms excess wood pulp (cellulose) into sustainable fibres. These fibres can be blended with other fibres, like wool, silk or cotton or made into a Tencel Lyocell textile.
Durable, efficient at absorbing excess moisture and soft on the skin, we use Tencel / Lyocell fibres in several of our tops and bottoms for Spring/Summer 2020.
This biodegradable and natural fabric is durable, moth resistant and if well cared for can last for decades. Made from the fibres of the flax plant, it is spun into a yarn which tends to have slight irregularities and changes in thickness that creates a special effect. This fabric is regularly used to make lightweight garments for hotter climates because it breathes well and absorbs moisture without holding bacteria. It also needs significantly less water to grow than conventional cotton. Organic linen is when no chemicals or pesticides have been used during the production, from the growing the plants to producing the linen yarn.
Our linen garments are made from either premium linen, organic linen, or a Tencel and linen blend. Created to last, we offer a number of linen products in our Spring/Summer 2020 collection
Developed by our partner CANDIANI, this innovative, biodegradable denim is made from organic cotton and a natural rubber core. The sustainable custom-engineered rubber, known as Coreva, is plant-based and replaces the conventional synthetic and petrol-based elastomers used to make stretch denim. This special fabric is made free of plastics and microplastics but still offers the same elasticity and recovery properties as conventional stretch denim.
Together with CANDIANI we created a special range of bio-stretch denim for Autumn/Winter 2019 and Autumn/Winter 2020. We will continue to use this special denim fabric in future collections.
One of nature's most resilient plants, fibres made from bamboo offer antibacterial properties that help absorb excess moisture. In addition to providing heat keep and cooling characteristics, it is softer than cotton and fabrics made from bamboo fibres tend to feel similar to cashmere and silk. Bamboo yarns are also remarkably elastic, durable and easy to blend with other fibres, such as cotton.
We used bamboo to create our new underwear range for Autumn/Winter 2019 and will continue to use it in future collections.
RECYCLED COTTON - RECYCLED CLAIM STANDARD (RCS)
The Recycled Claim Standard (RCS), established by the Textile Exchange, is an international, voluntary standard which lays out requirements for third-party certification of Recycled input and chain of custody. The main goal of the standard is to increase the use of recycled materials while adhering to the chain of custody requirements from the Content Claim Standard.
DENHAM garments made using recycled cotton fibres use at least 5% of the recycled material and retain all the same premium quality as those with virgin cotton.
RECYCLED DOWN STANDARD
DENHAM strives to use sustainable alternatives for real down in its outerwear garments, such as DUPONT SORONA, as much as possible. However, when we do use real down and feathers, we take extra precaution to ensure the geese and ducks that provide the materials are treated humanely, following our broader animal welfare policy.
As DENHAM is 100% against the force-feeding and live-plucking of birds, all of our products which do contain down and feathers are certified according to the Responsible Down Standard (RDS), an independent, voluntary global standard. Managed by non-profit organisation Textile Exchange, it ensures farmers, brands and supply chain parties follow and respect the Five Core Values of the animals. Click here to read more about our animal welfare policy.
We will start using recycled down in our outerwear for Autumn/Winter 2020.
Made from cannabis Sativa fibres, hemp fibres are hypoallergenic, breathable and non-irritating to the skin. It's widely seen as one of the most environmentally friendly fabrics on the market as the plant itself requires very little water to grow and is more naturally resistant to pests than cotton. Durable and strong, ten times stronger than conventional cotton, it is similar to linen in texture but very lightweight. Pure hemp fabrics become softer with wear and time, are biodegradable and can be easily recycled. Recycled hemp is usually blended with pure hemp or another yarn like organic cotton, for additional durability and properties.
We used hemp yarn in our Spring/Summer 2020 collection.
Similar to traditional polyester, recycled polyester is a man-made fabric made from existing plastic. Used plastics are broken down into small, thin chips which are processed and then transformed into yarn. Soft, yet durable, recycled polyester fabric maintains the original properties of its pure counterpart. However, it reduces the reliance on virgin petroleum as a raw material and diverts plastic from landfills and can be continuously recycled again and again, without quality degradation.
All of our care labels are made from recycled polyester and we aim to use the fabric for all of our garment pocket lining as well.
Elastane, also known as Spandex and Lycra, is a man-made material which is made from polystyrene, derived from oil. Recycled elastane is made from waste elastane fibres collected from manufacturers production lines and then spun into new yarns. It retains the same properties as virgin elastane, which is able to stretch five to eight times its original length. Made from at least 50% or more recycled material, recycled elastane is a sustainable alternative to conventional elastane as it cuts down on the use of virgin materials.
We used recycled elastane and organic cotton blends in several jeans from our new collections.
Sorona DuPont is a synthetic down made from polyester microfiber. Consisting of 37% plant-based components (corn-glucose) it is both lightweight and breathable. It offers exceptional resistance to heat loss, maintains its shape wear in and wear out while retaining unparalleled softness against the skin. A durable and responsible alternative to goose or duck down, it is ideal for outerwear insulation.
We have used Dupont Sorona for our outerwear collection since our Autumn/Winter 2017 collection.