LOOK: Cool summertime dressing from this sustainable color dye collection

Published April 14, 2021, 10:14 PM

by John Legaspi

American fashion designer Lilly Pulitzer once said, “I am a believer that color affects people’s moods.” That is quite true. A dash of vibrant reds and yellows can brighten a gloomy day. Blues and greens provide Zen and serenity, a sense of paradise. Pink is not short on fun and giggles and vivid violet exudes luxury.

Thanks to fashion, we can easily boost our spirit with the colors from the clothes we wear. While black and white are classics, dressing with color is always an adventure. 

That is what Swedish clothing brand H&M explores in its latest collection under the Innovation Stories line. Dubbed as Color Story, it features an array of pieces in watercolor palettes made “using techniques like biotechnology, plant-based pigments, and digital textile printing.”

At the core of the collection is the retail giant’s initiative to create a more circular future for fashion. That is made possible with the brand’s partnership with Swedish fashion tech company We are Spindye and Colorfix, a British biotech startup that harnesses the ability of microbes when it comes to fixing and creating pigments. Taking its sustainability initiative even further, the collection will have rentable pieces in stores in Sweden and Berlin.

“Working with such interesting innovators and their wonderful ideas has been an incredible journey,” says Ella Soccorsi, concept designer at H&M. “Colorifix, for example, is the first company to use a natural, biological process to produce and fix pigments onto textiles. They’re launching worldwide with this collection. We’re thrilled that despite its state-of-the-art manufacture, the collection feels effortlessly modern and fresh.”

Describe as edgy and bohemian, the Color Story’s items ranges from “digitally printed spaghetti-strap-waisted cropped shirt and drawstring skirt, a plant-based dyed caped dress and poncho-style hoodie, and a chestnut top and trouser co-ord.”

Its ethical mission is also echoed in its accessories and footwear line with earrings made from recycled glass and chunky sandals with Bloom material (a flexible foam partly produced with algae biomass), among others.

“We’re continually aiming to create elevated pieces with more sustainable materials and processes,” says Ann-Sofie Johansson, creative advisor at H&M. “With this collection, our forward-thinking designs work together with revolutionary dye processes to make a positive change—be that lower water consumption or reformed manufacturing. This collection has a charming free spirit; our customers will no doubt love these contemporary pieces, but we hope they’re inspired by the empowering sustainable narrative, too.”

The Color Story collection goes on sale starting April 15, 2021, exclusively available at the H&M website.