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Unifi's Repreve fibre part of Queen Museum's exhibit
Apr '18
Rainwear and swim garments by leading New York fashion designer Trace Reese, made with Repreve fibre from recycled water bottles collected in Flint, are currently on display at Queens Museum’s Watershed Gallery in New York. Part of the fashion project, Flint Fit, the showcase can be seen at the award-winning artist Mel Chin’s All Over the Place exhibit.

In Flint, the water is contaminated with lead, forcing residents to rely upon bottled water for cooking, washing, and drinking, creating a never-ending stream of empty plastic bottles. At Chin’s instigation, more than 90,000 used water bottles were collected by the people of Flint over the course of six weeks. Once sorted, the bottles were sent to Unifi where they were cleaned, shredded, and transformed into Repreve recycled performance fibre. The Repreve fibre was then sent to Mount Vernon Mills and Texollini where it was woven and knit into fabric.

Using this fabric, Tracy Reese designed a capsule collection for Flint Fit inspired by the power and necessity of water, manufacturing history of Flint, and resiliency of the Flint community. Reese’s designs were brought to life by at-risk women in the commercial sewing programme at St Luke N.E.W. Life Centre in Flint, who sewed the recycled fabric into rainwear and swim garments.

Jay Hertwig, Unifi’s Group vice president global brand sales said, “We’re proud to be a part of this exciting moment in art-fashion history. At Unifi, we’re able to transform plastic bottles into Repreve for products that people enjoy every day, and we’re thrilled that Repreve is playing a key role in such a positive movement that came from something so catastrophic.” (GK)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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