Ok I admit it. I am a science nerd, but I am also a fashionista! Every season I wait for the launch of clothing collections with appreciation of the imagination that comes with the design process. It's always fun and emotional peeking at what the trends will be.
The latest in fashion collection due for launch in 2013 are clothes made from fermented wine. The fermented fashion line is the brain child of some microbiologists and a fashion textile designer who innovatively created fabric from wine microbe.
Question. Teens and adults are warned to not operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, but what about driving while dressed in the wine clothing line? Will you need to take a BAL (blood alcohol level) reading before slipping on the threads for a night out on the town?
In the fashion world each designer has to out beat the other with something that has never been done before. Years ago I knew about and purchased edible clothes. Just recently, last summer I read that a well known fashion designer was throwing coffee and gravy on $500 shirts to create nasty food stains on his clothing line. (Later it was revealed that he was having a nervous "creative" breakdown.). But whiskey, wine or beer into a wearable, this is unique. This is definitely something new. I didn't know what to expect to see when I read a news clip that unfortunately didn't contain images of what the wine clothing looks like.
Over the next few days, I became so obsessed with the microbe clothes that I surfed on the web until I finally found images of the proposed 2013 clothing line. To my surprise I fell in love, love, love with the artist renderings of the red wine tinted body fitting dresses. If I can drop a few pounds over the next several months, I may be tempted to shell out some moolah to purchase one of these outfits for myself.
I just know, the fashion police will be all over this innovative "germy dress" idea as Lady Gaga or some risk taking actress sports one of these outfits down the red carpet.
Microbes Just Want To have Fun
You may be wondering right about now why I'm singing the praises of fashion in a blog related to science. Well it seems that the wine dresses are actually made of fermented microbes.
It seems that the clothes that are made from wine are created from a process of fermented bacteria created when red wine is mixed with acetobactor. The acetobacter is turned into microbial cellulose, which is similar in texture to cotton. The clothing line will be released from a company called Micro-be. This joint venture includes the Australian research team Bio-alloy and a design textile artist Donna Franklin.
Cleaning Fashion Faux Pas
This post would not be complete until I sprinkle a word or two in about regulatory requirements.
Question: After wearing the microbe dress, how does clean such as outfit?
Well, for sure if the clothing line is manufacturer within the Unites States, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is going to have plenty to say about the care of the clothes. The FTC requires that any clothing sold in the United States contain a care and maintenance label. Care labels are critical to ensuring that the garments are cleaned and maintained safely. This requirement is mandated by two laws. The first regulation is called the Care Labeling Rule and it requires that all manufacturer and importers attach care instructions to the garment via a tag or print instructions directly upon the garment to reduce skin irritation.
It will be interesting to see what type of care label the wine clothes will possess. Currently there are several regulatory options for caring for clothes, such as: laundered in water via washer agitator; hand washing; chlorine bleaching or non-chlorine bleach for color-safety; dry-clean with solvent chemicals; cool or hot air tumble drying; and steam or dry ironing.
The second law is called the Textile and Wool Acts. This legislature requires that labels contain three pieces of information pertaining to the garment, namely the fiber content, the country or origin and finally the manufacturer, importer or dealer's name.
Accessory Spotlight Within Six Degrees
After reading about the microbe clothes, I am definitely feeling a passion for fashion as it relates to the whole change molecular creatures (i.e. bacteria, fungi, etc.) in a fabric thing. Lately, on my design pad, I've been sketching some head turning accessories, which I may pitch to the Micro-be team if I can get that magical Kevin Beacon six degrees of separation phenomena working for me. In other words, I need an introduction to the Microbe team. Can you hook me up?
My sketched drawings of fine jewelry, flattering purses and six inch spike shoes all made in the shape of beakers, pipettes and test tubes compliments the wine microbial cellulose clothing. Remember, you heard the accessories idea here first.