We came down to ‘Linen’ long after searching for the best material to express natural chic. Linen can be produced without large-scale irrigation, which saves up water consumption and prevents pollution of the environment. Linen is also an eco friendly material in a way that it has no harm in soil in terms of salterization.
Linen is a durable, breathable fabric and has natural antibacterial function. It’s always enthusiastic just to watch how this fabric wrinkles and floats naturally. Because of these aspects, We thought Linen would be the perfect material to express our pursuit of being sophisticated with naturalism.Organic cotton
Compared to traditional Cotton, Organic cotton is produced with methods to minimize harms in the environment by using less water and pesticides under a system to maintain fertilization of soil. Organic cotton has amazing quality as it doesn’t irritate skin being allergy-proofed. It also has positive aspects as it prevents unwholesome effects not only in the consuming stage but also in the stages of production. In addition, cultivating Organic cotton allows healthy farming as well as contributes to reducing radical climate changes by trapping CO2 under the soil.
Open Plan uses organic Cotton that has been grown in land free from pesticides or chemical substances for over 3 years. Organic Cotton respects the environment and its people. We use fabric with GOTS certificate of 100% organic cotton, we use gray goods in order to minimize the dyeing process, and practice AF washing resulting in the softness of the textile. Our ivory-coloured T shirts do not go through any whitening treatment process and as a result we can see small spots that exist in only natural fabric. These spots are not defectious but show the fabric is natural, organic, and harmless to the skin.Tencel ™ (lyocell)
Tencel is a fiber produced from Eucalyptus trees and can be easily draped. Because of its soft and glowy texture, Tencel makes a perfect material for showing natural elegance of a garment.
Without the use of pesticides, Eucalyptus trees grow fast and sturdy in a quarter-size of land which is utilized to produce cotton. Also, they take up 80% less water compared to Cottons. We can recycle 99% of already used, nontoxic tencel and reuse it after the eco-friendly treatment. (For more information, please check out Lenzing)Sleeping stock fabric
35% of our products are made with ‘stock’ fabrics. From the Dongdeamun Apparel and Sewing Corporation, there are countless tons of fabrics being dumped out each year. We face the reality of throwing out 72 thousand tons of fabrics in just one year in Seoul alone. We, Open Plan, don’t want those fabrics to pollute our environment.
So we buy unused fabrics of other designers or over-produced fabrics. These cloths may be lacking diversity and the supply not steady. That’s why we carefully pick out fabrics with precise criteria and certification process. By topping up Open Plan’s sense of fashion, we believe it is the process of making something meaningful which relates to Humanity and environmental-friendly design.
In the process of seeking ‘good’ materials, we coincidently found out about natural dye. When manufacturing a piece of fabric, It is usually the stage of dyeing when the biggest harm in our earth is caused. In this process, innumerable chemical substances are used and some of them can cause serious damage to both the environment and our body. Natural dyeing is a high technique to protect the earth and human body.
When using colors extracted from the trees, flowers, fruit skins and plant roots etc, we can discover the incomparably elegant and smooth colors. Not only having stunning colors, natural dye also is beautiful in a way that it minimizes chemical and energy consumption. Although it is rather difficult to extract colors uniformly and natural dyed fabrics have to be washed only in neutral detergents, it is still worth developing in this way.
Ozone washing is a eco friendly washing method which uses only 1/10 of water needed to wash traditional jeans. This imposes oxidation effect of ozone to change colors of a jean and creates natural texture by reducing maximum of 96% of water and 70% electricity. In addition, it doesn’t require chemicals used in past washing process which results in 95% decreased usage of chemicals.
Nut buttons are made with organic plant based materials of ivory palms such as and Tagua coconut trees. These trees are often called ‘vegetable ivory’, since they are reminiscent to real ivory and interestingly, their scientific term, Phytelephas is even derived from a Greek word meaning elephant. Unlike poor elephants that get killed for their beautiful ivorys, these trees can last for over 100 producing years. A stump of a Tagua tree can provide 15 bundles of fruit called mocochas. In each mocochas, there are 30 seeds approximately and we call these Corozo or Tagua nut.
Tagua nut buttons naturally have ivory color and soft textures like fingerprints. This sophisticated textures and color can never be manifested from plastic buttons. Also the fact that they are easy to dye and their unique elegance of color and texture make them even more charming.
Corozo only falls down from trees after being fully ripe and this is the best moment for manufacturing buttons. In other words, Corozo is a sustainable resource in that using Nut buttons avoids indiscriminate tree cut downs. The best thing about the buttons is that we don’t need to cut down trees, and a stump of a tree can provide 13-23 kg of nuts over 100 years which makes itself a reproducing resource.
Corozo is composed of sturdy organic fibers which makes it a durable material. It endures scratches, heat and climate changes as well as water, steam, dry clean, and ironing. It has biodegradation function so there’s no need to worry about dealing with plastic wastes.
According to an environmental organization in Massachusetts called Cultural Survival, natural products from tropical trees such as vegetable ivory can produce 5 times more profit than those of banana farms or cattle ranches (which are known to be destroying tropical forests.) This may encourage the protection of tropical forests.
Nut buttons are more expensive than plastic buttons. They don’t last intact forever and turn yellow as the time goes by. However, we promise you that we won’t use cheap, vivid white plastic buttons that are easy to find in today’s designs. Rather, we would offer you the things that care for the earth and people.
As for the lining, we use plain colored cottons that are treated least amount of times or fabrics exclusively used for linings. The combination of these two surprisingly goes well with any textures.
So we prepare this fabric at once to use as linings in all of our products in order to minimize the waste fabrics. This leads to sustainable manufacturing as well as making ‘beautiful looking’ result inside out. Definitely this is what we like to do.
Open Plan’s care-labels are eco-friendly as they are certified by Oeko-tex class1. We try to take concern on the things that are considered small. We believe that little and trivial things become a bigger thing and form a strong structure. Small changes can lead to bigger impact.