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Sustainable Solutions Stand Out at Functional Fabric Fair NY

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One thousand days and several hundreds of sample swatches later, the Functional Fabric Fair, powered by Performance Days, returned to New York last week, ushering in next level, planet-positive fabric collections for active/athletic lifestyle. From first layer to outer shell and from accessories to footwear, the range of eco-functional fabrics has reached the point that event organizers added seven new sustainability-specific icons to keep pace with emerging climate-conscious properties featured in Spring/Summer 2024 textile collections. “What was available before is no longer sufficient,” explained Alexa Dehmel, an active sports designer and consultant, who provided an expert overview of the Performance Forum, an impressive display consisting of 300+ fabrics and 30+ accessories showcasing the latest performance textile innovations. Dehmel emphasized, “Today there are so many possibilities.”

No doubt sustainability remains a market driver, however, performance has its foot on the gas. It was a strong show for textile technologies as veteran suppliers and newcomers alike previewed new, improved functionality across the board from earth-friendly ingredients to space age tech. Smart fabric engineering combined with future-focused sustainable textile solutions was the order of the day at Functional Fabric Fair NY 2022 held at the Javitz Center on Manhattan’s west side July 19th and 20th. 

Here are just a few of the many standout products exhibited that preview trends for the season ahead:

Moonlight: The company’s MindfullyClean, a plant-based self-cleaning tech and InsectProof, a 100 percent organic and plant-based bug repellent tech garnered significant attendee attention at the show. Launched in 2021, Moonlight’s proprietary micelle delivery system is a differentiator in the category, according to company execs. Other Moonlight plant-based treatments include OdorSafe and EcoArmor; a plant-based stain repellent is also in the works.  

Industry veteran Brad Poorman, principal of Clean Textile Technology, featured two different sustainable offerings: Waterless Solutions with Drydye technology from the Yeh Group and Trizar technology. Trizar is a “smart” solution for thermal comfort that uses the science of emissivity, absorbing heat you produce to return to your body. Originally developed for NASA to be used as a heat shielding material on the shell of spaceships reflecting and re-radiating the intense heat as the ship passed through the atmospheres, Trizar technology is finding traction in outerwear to keep users warmer longer. The tech is featured in Forloh’s hunting/fishing line, and has been adopted by Artilect Studios for Fall 22. . 

Movetec: Elevated visual aesthetic and appealing handfeel incorporated in lightweight yet technical fabric textiles are key elements of Movetec’s Spring/Summer ‘24 collections. “Consumers want something different,” stated president George Wells. “Fabric has to have dimension and visual interest along with comfort and performance to make a modern garment.” New fabrications include jacquard jerseys with a wicking finish and super-lightweight qualities with water resistant DWR for lifestyle performance and athletic performance textiles. (Movetec fabrics in photo).

CoolCore: The Portsmouth, NH-based company features chemical-free treatment for thermoregulation. According to David Ludd, chief global sales and marketing officer, key factors in today’s marketplace are sustainability, handfeel and performance. “This is what people demand: natural performance with a soft hand, beautiful drape and stretch. That’s what we’ve been working on for knits and wovens.”

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