Orta launches its pan-European viscose EcoVero
Belgium-based fashion marque Orta has launched Orta La Suite, a project to create a new Continental-wide production chain for an environmentally friendly material, a pan-European viscose called EcoVero.
The move comes just two weeks after Orta – which concentrates on keeping garment production in Europe - revamped its own website with the tagline: Objectif Responsible, Tendance Abordable, meaning Responsible Goals, Affordable Trends.
Historically, viscose is mainly made in China, Pakistan or India, by companies that do not recycle polluting solvents. Nor do they the recycle wastewater but discharge that into the environment. Annually, an estimated 99 million tons of wood pulp is processed and more than 200 million trees cut down to make viscose.
“Our idea was born from the hospital bed of Gauthier Prouvost, the co-founder of Orta, when he was diagnosed with leukaemia. He was alone, isolated from the world, and he decided to leave a mark, to create something that really made sense,” said Orta in a release.
Orta is a community-driven brand, which sells almost exclusively online, except for occasional pop-ups in fashion destinations like Paris. It was co-founded by Marion Schoutteten with her key goal of making affordable, fresh fashion, made in Europe.
Like EcoVero, which sources its wood from Lenzing, on the shores of Lake Attersee in Austria, using trees already being felled in a forest to allow others to grow. This wood pulp is turned in EcoVero-certified fibres, which in turn are transformed into yarn in Portugal. A second yarn is produced in Germany, at Enka in Frankfurt, using trees come from immense Swedish forests that are PEFC- and FSC-certified.
Both yarns are then taken to Barcelona to Sedate, a weaver dating back to 1886. There, a unique loom spins this into new viscose. One that allows Sedatex to only use 25% of the amount of water typically used. Europizzi in Bergamo, Italy next stabilizes the fabric and burns off deformities, before sister company Lisa recovers the cleaner-than-clean viscose, before printing.
The new material’s pan-European journey finally ends in Portugal and France, where Orta workshops sew the garments together.
Orta has a six-month exclusive for EcoVero. The first examples of apparel in the material debut online on Sunday, April 24. Expect them to be heralded by one of Orta’s lively, girl-next-door videos shot around gardens, pools and mid-century modern furniture.
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