ICYMI: Ralph Lauren and Salvatore Ferragamo released sustainable collections made from recycled plastics


By Joan Kong

ICYMI: Ralph Lauren and Salvatore Ferragamo released sustainable collections made from recycled plastics

Ralph Lauren’s Earth Polo collection

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Think it’s impossible to wear something made completely from plastic? Think again. In conjunction with World Earth Day this year, Ralph Lauren is releasing a new iteration of its classic Polo T-shirts with Mother Nature in mind. Instead of cotton, the reimagined top—named the Earth Polo—is made from thread derived from recycled plastic bottles, and each piece is made from an average of 12 plastic bottles. The colours are dyed in an innovative process with zero water involved. Apart from the positive impact it has for the environment, First Mile (the organisation that is in partnership with the iconic American brand in producing the Earth Polo) engages entrepreneurs in low-income communities to collect recyclable plastic bottles, creating job opportunities for the people around.

In a statement released by the brand, its chief innovation officer, David Lauren says, “Ralph Lauren will commit to removing at least 170 million bottles from landfills and oceans, and will convert the use of all virgin poly-fiber to recycled poly-fiber by 2025. Plastic waste is a major issue threatening the environment—we want to be part of the solution and utilise an innovative approach to create something valuable.”

The Earth Polo will be available in global retail stores and on on April 18 in four colourways: Stuart Green, White, Navy and Baby blue. Click here for more info


Salvatore Ferragamo’s 42 Degrees collection

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While the Earth Polo is made completely from recycled plastic, Salvatore Ferragamo’s 42 Degrees collection—named after the inclination of 42 degrees where rainbows are formed—is made from a mixture of sustainable materials. Designers of the Italian fashion house’s creative studio were given a challenge to “create accessories with sustainable materials and consistently with the iconic style of the brand”, and ultimately, the accessories designed by designers Flavia Corridori and Luciano Dimotta won. The jury consists of Salvatore Ferragamo’s vice chairman James Ferragamo; creative director Paul Andrew; head of menswear Guillaume Meilland, and journalists and influencers internationally.

The 42 Degrees capsule collection comprises of two sneakers (one for men and one for women), a backpack, and a tote bag, which are mainly influenced by the brand’s archive and from the iconic Rainbow sandal from 1938. The eco-friendly iteration, however, are more than just that. The leather used for the accessories was specially developed using wet white chrome and metal-free tanning; the soles contain a high percentage of natural rubber and dyed with colours derived from plants; the fussbet insole is made entirely from organic fibers such as corn, kenaf, and wool; and instead of solvent-based, linings are water-based. The rainbow ribbon—the key detail of each piece—is made with yarn from high-tech polymer which transforms 100% of plastic bottles, and it’s dyed with a system that consumes less water, fossil fuel and chemicals.

The collection is 100% Made in Italy, and it’s available at selected boutiques worldwide. 

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