Jeans dyed with natural pigments from Earthcolors

Most blue jeans today are dyed with synthetic indigo dye, while other colours are often made with sulfur dye. The company Archroma created a range of dyes called Earthcolors that is made up to 100 per cent of natural raw materials as an alternative to synthetic dyestuff. Denim brand G-Star Raw used the Archroma’s pigments to create naturally dyed jeans.

At the beginning of 20th century, with the booming of chemical industry based in petrol, synthetic dyestuffs of higher performance and big volumes started to be commercialised around the world.

Archroma created a new way to synthesise dyes from natural non-edible agricultural and herbal industries waste, such as leaves and nutshells. Because the ingredients come from waste products from the agricultural sector, no additional farmland is necessary. According to the company, the dyes are fully traceable, from the natural waste material to the store.

The dyes are available in 7 earthy colours, ranging from brown to grey. They are made from natural materials such as almond shells, rosemary waste, and residues from cotton plants, bitter orange, beet and saw palmetto. The raw materials are mainly sourced within less of 500 kilometres (310 miles) from the production site in Barcelona. During the production process, the natural raw materials are converted into dyestuff.

The natural dyestuff is suitable for cellulosic fibres, such as cotton, viscose, linen, bamboo, kapok, etc., though Archroma says it is working on making it available for other fibres as well. The dyes can be applied using common dying technologies.

G-Star created the jeans line Elwood using 3 of Archroma’s Earthcolors, in green, brown and blue, all 3 available in men’s and women’s jeans.

G-Star Raw is the first denim brand to collaborate with Archroma to create a collection of coloured jeans, though other brands also partnered up with the dye company, such as Patagonia, Peter England, Kathmandu, and Calida.

Photos: G-Star / Archroma