IS IT POSSIBLE TO FIND A SUSTAINABLE AND
RESPONSIBLE ALTERNATIVE TO METALLIC THREADS?
The fibers used in Lurex are composed of delicate metal that is spun and knitted on the regular machinery that is used for other yarns/fabrics in textiles. The metallic fibres retain the original properties of the metal from which they are derived. The metallic thread is covered/laminated with transparent films. The transparent films ensure that the fibers remain safe from hard water, chlorine water or other climatic changes.
The metallic fibers are also made by a metalizing process. The metal from which the yarns are to be derived is heated until vapourization. After this, high pressure is applied to it to deposit it on the polyester film.
As a result, Metal threads are highly unsustainable and often forgotten when talking about environmental issues within the Fashion Industry.
Comparing to metal threads, «bamboo lurex» could allow to produce less waste and save energy.
Bamboo fibers are soft and shiny: it changes the color shading according to light refraction and makes the embroidery look more vivid and have more depth. I started by dyeing them with natural colors (turmeric and coffee). Then I spun them into a thread.
To these fibers, is added bamboo bioplastic. Its main advantage resides in the fact that it is possible to extrude it into a thin film. The bamboo bioplastic film can also be colored before the extrusion, allowing it to get metallic reflects.
(Warning: using those dyes would not be 100 % sustainable in opposite to the other steps of the process).
For the making of my final garment, I choose to twist the bamboo bioplastic with the fibers.