The Climate Jean by Soorty Enterprises
With Amsterdam Denim Days just behind us, it is exactly one year since we first met the people behind Soorty Enterprises. We initially worked together on an indigo workshop with Blue Print Amsterdam and from there we started talking about (responsible) denim manufacturing. Ever since, we have worked together on various projects which have aimed to spread the word about Soorty’s mission to clean up the denim industry and put sustainability first.
I was impressed by the effort Soorty put into changing the manufacturing process, as well as their attempt at making the end-consumer more conscious about the effects of the denim industry. It became clear that the company is putting a lot of resources, energy and financial support into educating customers and other stakeholders about responsible production processes.
As a result, Robin Denim decided to join Soorty in their mission to spread the word about the importance of change in the denim industry. Partly, by writing editorials like this, but also by hosting cool and fun educational workshops and engaging with collaborative projects.
We only have one planet, and it is beautiful
It’s been a hot topic for many governments and media outlets for the last few years, so it might sound obsolete or a ‘trend’ to talk about sustainability. The term has been used by so many companies, sincerely or for marketing purposes, so you might be bored of the topic by now. But for all the greenwashing and PR speak, it’s a crucial topic to engage with.
Arguably the term itself is losing weight, effect or true meaning due to over-usage, but the urge for responsible action is greater now than ever before. It’s on every TV channel and might sound like a cliché by now, but we really do have only one planet, and it is beautiful. But if we continue to destroy the planet through over purchasing and not educating ourselves, we won’t have a home for much longer.
Speaking about sustainability, it has become common knowledge that the denim and textile industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. Take water usage for example, beginning with growing cotton to washing garments, the amount of water used in creating even one pair of jeans is overwhelming. The industry’s carbon footprint is also substantial with jeans and denim being flown all over the world. All of these factors and more are continuing to harm our environment and the planet’s eco-systems with a very real impact.
But it’s not all negative; many brands are putting a lot of money and resources into responsible innovations to correct the wrongs done in the past, meaning new ways of working are being introduced and solutions to age old production techniques are changing. And it’s not too late to change and save our planet. The solution is simple, we work together and change together!
For a better now, for a better future
Soorty Enterprises, one of the world’s largest vertically integrated denim manufacturers, is one of the frontrunners of responsible manufacturing in the industry. They are changing the status quo and proactively working towards a more sustainable denim world. Beginning with their factory, as denim manufacturing consumes a lot of energy, Soorty have built a brand new factory which includes a high-tech solar rooftop. Today, 15% of all energy spent is coming from the solar panels and more panels are being added regularly to raise this number.
Soorty is also making use of their state of the art recycling plant which integrates recycled content (consumer and their own) into new fabrics, weaving fabrics with up to 99% recycled content. Further down the line, in the fabric finishing stage, Soorty have managed to reduce water consumption, energy consumption and CO2 emissions by 98%, 97%, and 99% respectively. And just as important as all these numbers, Soorty is also paying its 28,000 employees a fair living wage. This sounds pretty normal and what we’d expect, but unfortunately it isn’t!
As part of their mission and vision on sustainability, Soorty have decided to dedicate their SS 20/21 fabric and garment collections to our planet and the effects of climate change, to raise further awareness of not only the work they are doing but issues around sustainability more broadly. The name they’ve given this project; The Climate Jean.
The Climate Jean Collection
This season, Soorty has dedicated their whole Spring / Summer collection to the climate emergency. From fabric development and garment manufacturing to marketing and communication, every little detail has been carefully considered and fits into the concept of The Climate Jean.
The collection is not a point of reference for the organization to brag about the work Soorty are doing, but an invitation to collaborate with the company and raise awareness at all levels. More over, the concept is a homage to the beautiful earth and all its resources, pointing at the same time at its vulnerability.
The Climate Jean collection includes 6 different concepts, including; Nostalgia, Worn-In, High Energy, Summer Layers, Character Cotton and Love, Again.
Nostalgia is all about the relationship between sustainability and longevity. Making use of high-quality fabrics for authentic looks and luxurious vintage definitions, Nostalgia refers to the history and heritage of denim, which is being woven today with the best materials to become the vintage of tomorrow.
Denim is able to mold to the wearer’s lifestyle – it forms, it fades, it changes. With the Worn-in concept, Soorty is emphasizing the signatures of denim that has been well worn; rustic, faded and vintage. This concept is all about showcasing environmentally responsible ways of manufacturing in order to provide the end consumer with a well-worn and washed jean.
High Energy is built on different shades, a burst of color, action, and beauty. It is showing the high-level of technology which is incorporated into the denim production process, resulting in a reliable but dynamic denim that fits the fast pace of everyday life. High energy is designed for purpose, functionality and durability, with future urbanization in mind.
Climate change is very real, with rising sea levels and soaring temperatures as one of the clearest indicators. We have to change our habits and the way we wear our clothes. ‘Summer Layers’ stands for layering – a collection of multifunctional pieces to dress comfortably and to be ready for further inevitable changes in our environment and weather.
Character Cotton is all about the most important raw materials which are utilised in the manufacture of our favourite fabric. Through years of developments and enhancements, cotton harvesting can be less impactful on the environment and we can produce a product that lasts longer, while keeping its natural characteristics. The Character Cotton concept is designed in order to emphasize the natural characteristics of cotton when included in denim, such as twills lines and textures.
REDUCE – REUSE – REPURPOSE – RECYCLE – RELOVE are the keywords for this concept, as well as for Soorty’s sustainable mission. The ‘Love, Again’ collection is made from recycled fabrics, existing of 5-99% recycled content, processed by Soorty’s recycling plant. It also emphasizes the importance of a circular economy and cotton free fabrics, while embracing technology, digitalization and innovation. Last but not least, the ‘Love, Again’ also container includes Cradle to Cradle (C2C), Soorty’s design system to produce sustainable products based on circular design.
The Future of Denim
The Climate Jean collection is a statement for change and an invitation for all to join the movement. It is beautifully designed and made by people who love denim and want the best for our planet. See below for some designs we’ve picked from Soorty’s ‘Climate Jean Collection’.
Follow Soorty on Instagram – @soortyenterprises – in order to see the latest developments in the manufacturing of our beloved denim fabrics. Let’s change together, for the better!