Clothing made from organic cotton or other eco-friendly materials may lessen an outfit's environmental impact. But what about garments that benefit the air by sucking up pollutants? A futuristic collaboration between a nanotechnologist and fashion designer is raising the bar for environmentally friendly fashion with concept line Catalytic Clothing.
More of an academic conversation piece than a marketable brand for the moment, the designs are the work of chemist Tony Ryan at the University of Sheffield in England and professor Helen Storey of London College of Fashion. The duo premiered the project last summer with installations of air-purifying textiles, including a "field of jeans" that used photocatalysts to fight air pollution. On BBC today, Ryan and Storey announced that Catalytic Clothing will return this spring when the two attend Edinburgh International Science Festival bedecked in nitrous oxide-absorbing nanotechnology. According to Storey, Ryan will don a "catalyzed denim kilt complete with sporran (that external pouch that dangles around a kilt) and special socks, and I hopefully am going to be wearing an air purifying Vivienne Westwood top and fall frock."