To "Nu" Beginnings

Violet Gross
Copy of Stella McCartney .png

We feel like the word “revolutionize” is on overdrive lately but we actually believe it in this case when we say textile innovation company Evrnu is revolutionizing the fashion industry. They have created a proprietary engineered fiber made from clothes that would otherwise be put to waste. NuCycl, the technology behind this progress, works at a molecular level to preserve and strengthen fibers for new uses. And it’s no shock to us who’s first in line to start using it.

Adidas x StellaMcCartney are at it again and have incorporated NuCycl into a limited edition hoodie. According to Evrnu, the Infinite Hoodie has "customized performance features" and "is designed to be disassembled and returned to the NuCycl system." How cool is that?

This isn't the first time we've talked about Adidas' efforts to minimize waste. And Stella has been recognized again and again for her advocacy towards the environment, animal welfare, and sustainability so a strategic partnership with a forward-thinking brand like Evrnu is now just her general M.O. (but that will never stop us from giving her a virtual pat on the back every time.)

While Evrnu's revolutionary product enables unwanted clothes to find a new life, it’s only one piece of the very complicated puzzle. Although circularity is a noble goal and an important step in the right direction, it doesn't solve millions of tonnes of garments from being produced or sitting in landfills, nor cheap toxic fabrics and dyes from being synthesized and leeched into our water and ground.

Positive change at any point in the fashion life cycle is an achievement worthy of commendation. But the environmental impact of fashion won't be truly reduced unless we get to the root of the problem: basic supply and demand. Until accountability is established for entities that seek to profit off destruction and depletion of resources, until ethical business and production practices and processes are implemented from beginning to end, and until excessive greed and consumption are no longer the norm (indicative of the international zeitgeist), the fashion industry status quo needs to be challenged and changed by all of us.

Prada is the new Black

Violet Gross

In the early 90’s the little black nylon bag with the understated yet iconic Prada triangle stitched at the top center was quite possibly the hippest, coolest, must-have bag. Wether you had the backpack or the shoulder bag, the Nylon Prada was the bag of the decade compared to it's over-embellished or logo-centric counterparts from Chanel and Louis Vuitton (hard to imagine right??).

As expected, the pendulum swings and fashion fiends couldn’t get enough of the studded, sequined, rhinestoned styles spewing from the likes of Dolce and Gucci — the gaudier the better. Well the pendulum has swung back in favor of Prada’s minimalism. Maybe it’s the flashlight on sustainability, making people crave it’s simplicity, or maybe it’s the fact Kendall Jenner is almost never without hers, or maybe it’s the sheer practicality of that nylon sucker (I don’t know about you but my white leather Celine requires a personal wipe down every time I bring her out) — whatever the reason, the nylon Prada is BACK! However the trademark bag is entering modern times and modern times in fashion means the environment must be considered first.

Introducing the new Prada, the "Re-Nylon” bag made from nylon reclaimed from ocean plastics, fishing nets and textile fiber waste. The “Re-Nylon” bag is part of an initiative by Prada to use only repurposed nylon by 2021. If they can pull this off it means 700,000 meters of nylon used annually will now be recycled. Hallelujah!

The new nylon was created in partnership with Italian synthetic fiber producer Aquafil whose recycled nylon products have been used by Gucci and Stella McCartney as well. A collection of six bags will be created for the “Re-Nylon” version including the belt bag, the shoulder bag and two Prada backpacks (OMGEEE). The price point is similar but slightly less than the original and if you can’t afford to get your hands on a new “Re-Nylon” start scouring TRR and vintage stores for the OG. Oh - and of course list it on Tulerie so we can share!

xx Merri

Another Reason to Crush on Tony Stark.

Companies Doing GoodViolet Gross

The Iron Man is handsome, brilliant, witty and fearless. Everything we love it a man. He has defeated evil villains and now he’s tackling the imminent issue of climate change. You know how to touch our hearts Tony.

Through an organization called The Footprint Coalition, Robert Downey Jr. claims ‘we could clean up the planet significantly, if not totally, in 10 years’. When they launch in April 2020, their plan to clean is based around Artificial Intelligence, including robots and nanotechnology. Like us, Downey says he has ‘a quiet sense of crisis’ and that he trusts AI as a significant technological advancement that gave him hope.

To our dismay he didn’t share more than that, so we added our email to the Coalition’s newsletter. Now we wait, with the same anticipation of learning the true fate of Tony and Pepper.

xx Violet

A Chemical Change

Violet Gross

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear words like fluorinated chemicals and formaldehyde? I’ll take a wild guess it’s not fashion. But it maybe should be.

Fluorinated chemicals are among the world’s most toxic materials. These toxins are used across industries to provide strength, resilience and durability sounds great right? Wrong. These hazardous toxins are resistant to degradation so they break down slowly (if at all) in the environment. When these chemicals are added to consumer products, they can migrate into air, household dust, food, and can pollute drinking water. You’re currently playing with these chemicals when you cook in your non-stick pan, wear your winter boots, throw on your fave screen print shirt (that likely says something ridiculous like “I’m a mermaid-unicorn") and when you wand your daily dose of mascara. Per Vogue business, “they’ve been found in the blood and breast milk of the vast majority of people who’ve been tested.” Yikes!

One of the main reasons fluorinated chemicals are used is because of it’s amazing stain-resistant ability and the lack of alternatives available. Levi Strauss & Co. decided the benefit of stain resistance didn’t justify its environmental cost and discontinued an entire product category that used the chemical, despite it being a significant business to the company. This is case in point what we mean when we talk about the concept of the greater good!

Wonder how some of the shirts you buy seem to stay so crisp? That’s thanks to formaldehyde’s anti-wrinkle properties. Also, the same chemical used in medical labs as a tissue preservative and in pesticides and fertilizers. Yuck! Given the choice, ten out of ten times, I’ll take a wrinkled shirt. Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard (a pioneer of the greater good concept) has unapologetically nixed formaldehyde since he founded the brand in the 1970s, confidently stating “Our clothes are meant to be worn to get dirty and explore in — people can worry about wrinkles in their other clothes.” With a net worth over $1B, I think it’s safe to say Yvon’s decisions aren’t so absurd.

What’s the solution? Reducing or eliminating the use of these chemicals. The first step includes eliminating nonessential uses of these chemicals. Simply put, “It’s possible we use them kind of like antibiotics. You use it when needed,” says Scott Echols, programme director for ZDHC. These hazardous chemicals are used for wire and cable insulation for computer and cell phone circuits to enable high-speed data transfer; high reliability hoses for aircraft and cars to reduce emissions; and sterile equipment used in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals,food products, and chemicals and in firefighting foams for extinguishing fires. These feel like essential reasons to employ harmful chemicals — keeping your shoes bright white does not. Can we agree on that?

As with most things it starts with us, the consumer, and being curious about what’s going into products we're using on a daily basis. It also means supporting businesses like Patagonia and Levi’s who are making change now. Change will happen when customers tell companies with purchasing power what they expect from them.

One small change you can make today? Consider switching to an organic dry-cleaner. Dry-cleaning facilities use a TON of both fluorinated chemicals and formaldehyde. Be sure to ask whichever dry-cleaner that claims themselves as organic what treatments they actually use (not all are equal). Moral of the story, be curios, ask questions, propose change!

xx Merri

Nice Package!

Violet Gross

Nice package…we never say that…for any reason. We’ve been anti-packaging from the start, not because it was relevant but because we personally loathe the amount of waste associated with packaging, especially in beauty and retail. It’s too much! So we stripped it from our plans even though we knew that meant giving up a core branding opportunity — for a start-up brand identity and exposure is crucial. But we’ve never looked back on that decision and turns out you all like this approach as much as we do which makes us all giddy inside. It proves not only do we bond over our shared love of fashion but we also share the same values, and that means something to us as we build and foster the Tulerie network.

We recently read an awesome article in Vogue centered around the advent of this disposability mentality and the absurdity of package waste. Let us summarize it here with a line in the article quoted by the TerraCycle (refillable packaging) CEO, “Recycling is a solution to the system of waste, but not the root cause. It’s like taking Tylenol every morning because you have a migraine. The Tylenol is a solution to the symptom, but you aren’t solving the reason you have a migraine. The earth’s “migraine” is the climate crisis, and you could say the “Tylenol” is the persistent greenwashing and meager efforts from global brands to reverse it. The root cause isn’t one specific thing, like fast fashion or air travel; more broadly, it’s our culture of disposability.”

Are you a culprit of the disposability mentality? We used to be, and while fast fashion isn’t the only issue in retail it was certainly allowing that mindset to persist in us personally. Since launching Tulerie we borrow more and buy better and we’ve given so many women the opportunity to do the same. We're giving ourselves a little pat on the back this weekend because it's not often we stop to recognize what we're building, together with you. Dare to share.