Origami-based clothing? It is not impossible and offers unthinkable benefits. Aeronautical engineer Ryan Yasin, a London-based Icelander, knows this. That is why he created Petit Pli. It is his kids fashion brand that has clothes that stretch and can be used in many sizes. Yes, the tissue is growing.
When he was 27, he sent his sister a package of clothes for his newly born nephew. When he arrived, the clothes were no longer usable. Yasin got a lightbulb. “Maybe I could develop clothes that grow and last longer, which has a positive impact on the fashion industry,” he explains. “I studied different leaf techniques, different densities, and tried up to a thousand different materials,” he recalls. Then it launched the first product that has already sold more than 5,000 units. It was trousers and a waterproof and ultra-light sweater made from recycled bottles for children. Garments that can expand up to seven sizes; that is, to stretch without losing its shape.
His bet was widely awarded. Petit Pli has received the Global Change Award from the H&M Foundation and the Red Dot Award. Yasin was among the 30 Most Promising Young Entrepreneurs in Europe in Forbes magazine’s fashion category.
The fashion industry is responsible for 20% of the world’s wastewater and 10% of global carbon emissions. Not only are more clothes being bought, they are also being thrown away earlier. The storage time of an item of clothing has halved since the beginning of the century.
“Our perception of the value of a garment is distorted by its low price,” explains Yasin. The question is how to get the buyer to pay more for clothes that get less dirty. It is not enough for Yasin to offer an ecological version of it. “The fact that an offer is sustainable does not mean that it is relevant. For it to be like that, it must also be practical and attractive. You can have the most sustainable product in the world, but if nobody wants it, its relevance is zero. “Clothing that stretches and fits many sizes is at the heart of the technical universe to which it belongs. “We have to understand the needs that people have with their clothing and their design, based on them and not on their wishes. So we can offer something useful ”. Petit Pli was born with this philosophy: constantly buying clothes for a growing child is a necessity. One solution is that clothes grow with the child.
But kids fashion is just the beginning. Petit Pli is already using its fabric for other purposes: uniforms for the construction sector, masks that adapt to the structure of the face of the user, clothes for pregnant women … The possibilities to combine technology and fashion are huge. The designer speaks of sneakers that generate electricity, of sheets that clean us while we sleep, of downloadable prints that are projected onto textiles… “There are many variables in which technology can interact with our clothing. The fact that the garments grow is just the beginning, ”he predicts.