Sustainable luxury fashion designer Mara Hoffman has unveiled a groundbreaking dress dubbed “The Dress that Changes Everything.”
The new Mara Hoffman dress marks a significant step in sustainable fashion, as it is the first design to utilize Circ Lyocell, a filament lyocell made from 50 percent recycled textile waste. The collaboration between Mara Hoffman and Circ, a fashion technology company focused on recycling polycotton textile waste into new fibers, signals the debut of Circ Lyocell in the luxury fashion market. Moreover, it signifies a long-term commitment as the designer plans to transition her collections from virgin lyocell to Circ Lyocell over the next three years.
Hoffman previously made waves by becoming the first in the luxury market to replace silk with lyocell. While it marked a significant leap toward sustainability, the traditional lyocell production process still relied on wood pulp from trees. Hoffman’s decision to embrace a regenerated version of lyocell, created from textile waste diverted from landfills and incineration, reflects the fashion industry’s growing interest in circularity. It also underscores her brand’s dedication to eco-conscious materials and her commitment to pursuing environmentally-friendly alternatives.
The dress itself is part of a limited collection of 35 gowns, all bearing Hoffman’s signature poppy color and strappy silhouette. Each dress is independently numbered as a collector’s item. Staying true to the designer’s New York heritage, these gowns were cut and sewn in New York City.
One standout feature of the dress is a special sewn-in label, crafted by Circ investor Avery Dennison, a company specializing in materials science and digital identification solutions. This label, known as the Digital Care Label and powered by atma.io connected product cloud, is made from cutting scraps from the dress itself. It contains a QR code that allows individuals to scan and learn about the dress’s production process, including its waste footprint. Through the Digital Care Label, Hoffman encourages dress owners to return the garment to the brand’s retail store after extended use. This way, the dress can be sent back to Circ for recycling, aligning with the principles of circular fashion.
The Mara Hoffman label, the recipient of the CFDA Environmental Sustainability Award, and Circ, recognized as an Earthshot Prize finalist, are among the pioneering brands, innovators, and supply chain partners working to address the fashion industry’s carbon footprint, which accounts for ten percent of global carbon emissions. Each year, an estimated 46 million tons of polycotton textile waste ends up in landfills or incinerators because existing recycling methods struggle to separate the plastic (polyester) from the natural fiber (cotton) and recover both materials.
Circ’s innovative recycling technology stands out as the sole platform capable of successfully separating polycotton blended textile waste and reclaiming both cellulosic and synthetic fibers. Leveraging this technology, Mara Hoffman and Circ have jointly created a garment featuring lyocell crafted with 50 percent cellulosic pulp from recycled polycotton textile waste and 50% FSC-certified cellulosic pulp.
Peter Majeranowski, CEO of Circ, emphasized the significance of this collaboration, stating, “We have all the clothing we need to make all the clothing we’ll ever need.” He sees Mara Hoffman’s commitment to Circ Lyocell as a pivotal milestone towards true circularity in the fashion industry.
Mike Colarossi, Vice President of Innovation, Product Line Management, and Sustainability at Avery Dennison, underscored the importance of partnerships like this one. He believes in the power of digital IDs to drive traceability and circularity and sees it as a positive force in advancing sustainability in the apparel industry.
Shoppers interested in this eco-conscious creation can find it at the Mara Hoffman store in Soho and online at marahoffman.com
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