October 10, 2010

Cradle-to-Grave refers to the life cycle of a garment in that the materials come from the earth and therefore return to the earth. The life of the garment is taken into consideration from the consumer, the care and the disposal of the garment. A Cradle-to-Grave product can only be used a few times before the quality of the product will eventually be un-usable and ends up in the landfill.

One company that uses this Cradle-to-Grave method is a company called Anvilknitwear (http://www.anvilknitwear.com) which is an earth friendly sportswear company that sells t-shirts that are comprise of “recycled polyethylene terephthalate plastic bottles and transitional cotton. The t-shirts carbon footprint is about 3.29 kilograms of carbon dioxide per T-shirt which is a 15-percent-lower footprint than Anvil’s conventional cotton t-shirt — with each AnvilSustainable t-shirt preventing approximately three plastic bottles from being sent to landfills” (anvilknitwear, 2010). I chose this company because it was one of the few companies that still used the Cradle-to-Grave method. A lot of the company websites I looked up were mostly Cradle-to-Cradle methods. I thought this company was interesting because on their website they have a “trackmyt” link where you can type in a specific code from your t-shirt and track the origins of how and where your t-shirt has been pre-purchase. The website actually goes behind the scenes and views pictures, videos and stories about the t-shirt and the creative process.



Cradle-to-Cradle refers to the life cycle of one product that then becomes connected with a new product and it’s life cycle. This is the idea that the production of clothing never goes to waste and instead becomes a new and or high-quality product. This approach has endless possibilities and the materials can be used over and over again within a variety of things.

One example of a company that uses this Cradle-to-Cradle method is NICE (Nordic Initiative, Clean and Ethical; http://www.nicefashion.org) which is a joint commitment of the Nordic fashion industry that takes the lead on a social and environmental issues. This company started based off of themselves as consumers trying to be more responsible and sustainable in the environment. Their focus is “to inspire a more environmentally and safe and ethical design and sourcing while taking the customer in a wash, care, and prolonged-use issues” (NICE, 2009). In the consumer guide section of the website, it mentions what you as the consumer can do to help these environmental issues. I chose this company because they are letting the reader be aware that a garment can last for a longer period of time. They have a section of disposing and recycling and they mention the re-use of products and upcycling them to prevent textile waste.


In comparing this website to the Anvil website, both have links to track down the “journey of a t-shirt” however NICE focuses on the impact of the environment, letting consumers be aware of how harmful the process may be towards a garment.

The Cut-and-Sew garment creation method is based on the idea that fabric is cut and then sewed leaving at least 10-20 percent of the total fabric used is put to waste. Jigsaw is a part of the Cut-and-Sew method in which fabric is cut out and then sewed together leaving no waste. I do think that fabric waste eliminations is possible. As long as the designer can find other creative ways and different approaches to the cut and sew method that has little to no waste in the end. I think that now-a-days, designers are trying to get the most out of their money by putting less fabric to waste. Today, sustainability and its buzz is becoming more and more popular that designers are finding different methods and approaches to keeping an environmentally sustainable world. This process will not only help the designer in their creative process but also help the consumer be aware of how much time and effort goes into the garment they’re wearing.

Preconsumer waste manly comes from the materials from textile, fiber and cotton industries that are remanufactured for cars, homes, furniture, paper, yarn, apparel and other industries. Postconsumer waste is defined as any type of garment or household article made from manufactured textiles that owner no longer needs and discards for various reasons like the garment being worn out, damaged, outgrown, or are not in style anymore.

Rage dealers collect excess inventory from charitable organizations and sort them into vintage collections, exports to countries, and wipers, and fiber for stuffing. Instead of all excess textiles ending up in the landfill, rage dealers are able to reduce the waste in landfills by sorting postconsumer items and distributing them in a place where they could be used or re-used otherwise (e.g. second hand stores).


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