Unfortunately, the global textile waste mountain is getting bigger and bigger. This, of course, has many negative consequences for nature and climate. According to Blue LOOP Originals, a clothing brand from Twente, things must change. The company supplies almost 20 companies in and outside the Netherlands with sustainable workwear. They also produce sustainable clothing for the consumer market. Blue LOOP focuses on the Benelux countries, Germany and the UK, predominantly producing their clothing in the EU.
Blue LOOP is one of Ideavelop’s sustainable brands. Ideavelop is a wholesaler in Twente with a focus on sustainable production. Gertjan Eshuis, co-owner of Ideavelop: “Ideavelop is a combination of ‘I develop’ and developing new ideas. Our Blue LOOP Originals brand is a great example of this. We value sustainability and think controlled buying is much better than going along with mass consumption. Buying high-quality products occasionally is better than stocking up on cheap alternatives with unknown origins. We think this should be common sense, but that is certainly not yet the case.”
His Blue LOOP brand is a perfect example of this focus on sustainability. “We were searching for a solution to overproduction and overconsumption. Then we came into contact with Lenzing, the ‘champions of circularity’ from Austria. We have been committed to giving worn-out clothes and textile waste a second life with Blue LOOP Originals since 2011. Eleven years later, we finally have a circular solution for workwear.”
Eshuis’ brand initially focused on selling recycled clothing to consumers. “But increasingly, companies started demanding recycled workwear such as T-shirts, polos and jumpers. Usually printed with company logos. We started working with that, and it’s great that more and more companies value sustainability when buying workwear. We now collect our customers’ worn-out clothing to make it into new company clothing. This is possible because we use so-called mono-materials, which are easier to recycle. The worn clothes are used as a raw material. New Blue LOOP clothing comprises 25-40% recycled material. New materials are still necessary to guarantee the garment’s durability”, he explains.
“The workwear industry is perfectly suited to the brand. After all, the consumer market is supply-oriented. Production is high, hoping someone will want to buy it. The workwear industry, in contrast, is entirely demand-oriented. Products are produced to order. We also try to convey to the consumer market that it is healthier to focus on items that can be sold all year round and do not need to be discounted at the end of a season. Getting rid of fast fashion would already save a lot of waste."
Eshuis hopes he can help many Twente companies in this way. “Knowledge of textiles has always been a part of Twente; it is where our roots are. It would be nice to wake up more Twente companies and show them they can find 100% recyclable workwear closer to home. We use our clothes to improve the world a little bit every day. Our motto is ‘create something good’, with Blue LOOP Originals as the best example. Building a brand that uses waste as raw materials for clothes that consumers and companies wear. That’s cool, right?” Eshuis will keep trying to bring as many companies as possible together in the meantime. “We can exchange ideas and keep innovating in this way, which keeps us creative and sharp.”
Date: 16 March 2023 |
Source of tekst: Ideavelop, Gertjan Eshuis |
Author: Marloes Neeskens