Sunlight-Dyed, Reclaimed Textiles Make It Into Louis Vuitton Assistant’s New Fashion Collection

credits: Jiyong Kim

Latest eco-friendly fashion technique?

A Central Saint Martins student found a way to paint the clothes from his latest menswear collection without using printing or dying processes that would contribute to environmental pollution. The raw material used? Sun.

Jiyong Kim, the former design assistant at Louis Vuitton, counted on the power of sunlight to achieve shadows and color waves for his clothes. The student used reclaimed materials for every piece created, then assembled the outfits on mannequins, and left them out in the sun for up to five months.

“Textile and garment manufacturing causes environmental pollution and printing wastes a lot of water, only for the garments to eventually be discarded and cause more damage to the environment,” Kim told Dezeen.

Using sunlight, though, Kim did not just eliminate those steps but he created unique pieces, that only get better with time and increased exposure, just like wine.

For example, an indigo trench coat (see featured photo) was left in the sun with various accessories pinned to it. So, naturally, after taking them out, their shadows remained.

A great example of what you can achieve if you play with the shadows and lights is a black and orange outfit made from two pieces. The bomber jacket’s sleeves are darker than the rest as they were rolled up during sun exposure. The pants are two-toned as only one pant leg went through the dying process.

“The trousers had to be left out for five months for part of the leg to fade from deep black to light grey.”, revealed Kim and that’s because unlike vintage, modern clothes have harsher chemicals in them and are harder to manipulate by a natural source.

Kim’s collection, Daylight Matters, is a way to draw attention to the 92 million tons of textile waste every year and is comprised of eight looks.

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