When Zena Holloway, a British underwater photographer, discovered tangled willow roots in a river a few years ago, an idea popped into her head. What if she could turn roots into organic compostable clothing?
An idea that came to life at the London Design Festival, where Xena Holloway showcased her clothes made from plant roots grown to look like lace fabrics. These futuristic haute couture pieces are inspired by the incredible dress sprayed on Bella Hadid’s body during Paris Fashion Week.
To create these organic garments, Zena Holloway shapes her roots to her desired shape using molds she sculpts with beeswax. In about 12 days, the shoots reach a height of 20 centimeters, and the roots form a natural structure that can retain its original shade or be dyed to create textile sculptures that resemble pieces of coral.
“I want to imagine a future that still has coral reefs,” says the designer, referring to the disappearance of corals due to overfishing and climate change.
Zena Holloway is a biodesigner who explores the intersection of design and nature to create new products. His projects “seek to fulfill the dream of organic design, raise awareness of materials and inspire a more thoughtful and sustainable world.”
But while many brands sell sustainable clothing, Zena Holloway isn’t ready to trade just yet. “It will take a little more research and development to make dresses fully wearable, but I’m getting there,” she says, adding that several brides-to-be have asked her for dresses made from her natural material.
Along with Holloway, other designers who took part in the London Design Festival’s Material Matters showcase creations such as a collection of furniture made from recycled paper pulp, lamps made from the skin of sewn orange shoes and sandals made from plant-based materials, including agricultural waste.
CNET.com article adapted by CNETFrance
Image: Zena Holloway