How we turn a plastic bottles into a sustainable luxury fabric?

It all starts when you toss a PET bottle (labeled #1) into a recycling bin. These bottles are sorted at a recycling facility and bundled together in large bales. The bales of PET bottles are then taken to a PET reclaiming facility. The bottles are thoroughly cleaned, the labels and caps are removed, and the bottles are separated by color (the clear bottles will produce a white-ish yarn and the green bottles produce a green-ish yarn).

I Once they are sorted, the bottles go into a grinder where they are ground into small flakes. The flakes are tossed in hot air to give them a hard candy coating and then dried to remove any remaining moisture. Next, the dry, crispy flakes are shoved through hot pipes to melt them into a thick liquid. That liquid gets filtered through a dye plate with 68 tiny holes. As the liquid polyester flows through the holes, it forms filaments that are more than five times finer than human hair. The filaments pool and harden and are then sent over rollers where air entangles the filaments to create a dental floss-like yarn. The machine spools the yarn and then pulls it over hot metal rollers to stretch it and realign the polyester molecules. The resulting yarn is ready to be woven into luxury clothing.

PET recyclingprocess
  • PET bottles are sorted from other recyclable plastics such as PVC and HDPE, as the reclaimed material (PET flakes) is most valuable when it is most pure.
  • Bales of recycled bottles are sorted manually or automatically on the basis of colour, and to remove any foreign material or non-PET lids and bases.
  • The plastic is washed in a sterilising bath, after which the clean containers are dried and crushed into tiny flakes.
  • The flakes are washed again to ensure the purest possible final product.
  • These flakes become the raw material for new products.
  • For yarn, the light-coloured flakes are bleached, while flakes from darker bottles are used for yarn that will be dyed a dark colour; the flakes are melted in a vat and forced through spinnerets to produce fibres.

Printing and Dyeing:

PET2SILK is highly committed to eliminate hazardous chemicals from the textile supply chain. The commitment to Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) goal by 2020 has already been achieved. Textile finishing, dyeing and printing is done with zero impact dye stuff. This ensures;

  • An improved consumer quality for the user
  • No health risk at any stage of their Life Cycle
  • Are of both economic and ecological benefit
  • Can go into technical or biological cycles