Epson has collaborated with the renowned Japanese fashion designer Yuima Nakazato and his YUIMA NAKAZATO brand at Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week Spring – Summer 2023, in order to unveil captivating yet sustainable creations.
Yuma Nakazato incorporated Epson’s digital textile printing for his pieces. The process he implemented could potentially transform the industry as it is more eco-friendly than the traditionally polluting and toxic for the environment methods of producing fashion.
The method is a culmination of a three-year partnership between Epson and YUIMA NAKAZATO, and it employed the utilization of Epson’s dry fibre technology – an already existing procedure that recycles office paper with practically no water usage – that was tailored to fabricate non-woven printable fabric from pre-owned garments.
This demonstration showcased how a shift to digital textile printing with more sustainable pigment inks would potentially bring more economic benefits to the fashion sector, by making printing procedures eco-friendlier and more economical in terms of waste production.
The material for the new YUIMA NAKAZATO line was retrieved from second-hand garments from Africa, where much of the global clothing discards have been headed to. The designer travelled to Kenya, collected roughly 150kg of waste clothing material and then employed the dry fibre technology to convert it into 50 metres of re-fiberised fabric – a fewpieces of which were printed using Epson’s Monna Lisa digital printing technology with pigment inks.
Hitoshi Igarashi from Epson’s Printing Solutions Division explains the importance of the technology: “Although in its early stages, Epson believes its dry fibre technology combined with pigment ink digital printing could offer the fashion industry a much more sustainable future, significantly reducing water use while allowing designers the freedom to fully express their creativity.
“Epson’s Environmental Vision is committed to contributing to a circular economy, and this development could be one step towards achieving this. Dry fibre technology applied to the fashion industry offers the possibility of producing material for new clothes that have been recycled from used garments.”
In a trial of distributed printing for venue decoration, Epson inkjet printers in Japan and France with remote support from Epson engineers were used to create decorations in the venue space. Both Epson and YUIMA NAKAZATO intend to continue exploring the possibilities for contributing to a more sustainable fashion.