NEFFA produces MycoTEX a textile made from mushroom mycelium. Mycelium, the spores of mushrooms, is an incredible material, since it only needs little water to grow, and has the potential to be, for instance, antibacterial. The fabric is 100 per cent biodegradable and acts as nutritious feed for other plants at the end of its life as a garment. MycoTEX eliminates the steps of spinning yarns, weaving cloth, and sewing garments, thus taking out the costs, time, and energy this takes. Instead, the fabric is stuck into a mould and shaped. Founder of NEFFA Aniela Hoitink already used the mycelium modules to create a dress. Let her tell us more!
1) So, what is MycoTEX and how do you create it?
MycoTEX creates sustainable fabric from mycelium, the roots of mushrooms. With our BB-modelling process we create garments of this new textile that perfectly fits your body without the need to cut and sew! Our shorter supply chain eliminates the need for chemicals and pesticides. We reduce water usage by 99,5% and local production is reducing transport. We only grow what we need and have no textile waste during the production phase. And AFTER wearing, you can simply bury your garment in the ground and it will naturally decompose.
2) Why are you creating NEFFA?
I launched NEFFA in 2004, as a way to better express my creativity and to give me the opportunity to turn my original ideas into surprising products and concepts. The name NEFFA means “net effe anders” in Dutch, wanting to do things just a little bit differently. I believe that distinctiveness and individuality in people and materials are the elements that make the world an interesting place to live in. My aim is to develop the ultimate personalised garment and I am researching the different levels of personalisation.
3) What other projects in the sustainable textiles/fashion space you are excited about (done by you or others)?
Other projects that I am exited about are for example Solar fiber (solar energy in garments) and of course other biomaterials from companies, like Modern Meadow, Fruitleather, Algiknit or Pinatex. There are many resources that we can use to create textiles from.
4) How do you see the future of fashion?
The future of fashion is to rethink fashion as it is. With MycoTEX we are building the Fashion Company of the Future. We believe that the current supply chain is no longer working. The process has too many steps, is not transparent and not sustainable. By looking at innovations from other industries we are combining the best of all worlds to develop innovative and sustainable fashionable products.
5) Anything else you’d like to add/say!?
Why do we still make clothes that last for 40 years if we only wear them for 1 or 2 years max?
We live in a world of fast fashion and disposable clothing and most people think that this is a disaster. The industry is now working on recycling and circular fashion. And with this they are trying to change the behaviour of 7 billion people. But our consumerist world started already centuries ago. Trade expanding in the 16th century and the industrial revolution in the 19th century for example have accelerated this. So changing our deep-rooted behaviour is an enormous task. I think fast fashion and disposable clothing represents an incredible opportunity. We have an entire generation of people who now expect to own a garment for a year, maybe two, before disposing it and buying something new. With the right type of materials (cradle-to-cradle) they can be custom-designed to meet that life cycle. We need solutions that respond to the reality that we live in. Our solution is MycoTEX.
What do you think of MycoTex? Share your thoughts by tweeting us @Amberoot, or in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!
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This article is part of series “Future of Fashion Series”: