Would you wear a “shit dress” on you? We bet that the answer is no, whether we speak in a figurative sense or even less if we speak in a literal sense. Think about it though, because cow poop could be a new source of materials for making clothes, at least according to a Dutch designer.
The problem of cow droppings is a significant environmental problem, with all the farms present in the world, and recycling is currently only partially effective. Eindhoven designer Jalila Essaïdi has decided to look for new ways to reuse these droppings, and has had results that will probably surprise many.
Working in its “BioArtLab“, Essaïdi has discovered that manure can be used as a starting point to make new biodegradable materials. The interesting aspect is that from the excrements one can derive both the base of the material and the chemical compounds to treat it.
In practice, the base of the new material (called “Mestic“, from the Dutch mest, manure) is the cellulose that comes from the plants eaten and digested by the cows. And from the manure are also extracted the acids that allow to create cellulose acetate, which is considered a sort of “natural liquid plastic”. And if you’re wondering: no, the material doesn’t smell and is perfectly hygienic.
“It is not the first time that scientists are looking for ways to solve the manure problem, but it is the first time that it is considered a valuable resource,“ the Dutch designer commented.
A few months ago, Jalila Essaïdi organised, with the support of the city of Eindhoven, a fashion show where a series of clothes designed by her made with the Mestic, that attracted the interest of some fashion houses, were shown.
It is likely that products made with this new bio-compatible material will be on the market soon: the only obstacle is psychological, and that is how consumers can react to the idea of wearing something “made of poop”.