When Javier Goyeneche first laid his eyes on his son Alfredo, what he saw is not just a blessing but an inspiration. It made him reflect upon the world that he would leave for his son’s generation. Frustrated with the fashion industry’s excesses, Goyeneche decided to build Ecoalf, named after his son. Ecoalf is a progressive fashion brand that aims to integrate breakthrough technology to create ethical clothing for “future generations.” Ecoalf’s foray into sustainable fashion is distinguished by its innovative approach. Rather than simply upcycling waste materials, Ecoalf aims to utilize a wide variety of resources and new technologies for their clothes.
For instance, the brand has recently made waves when they launched a project called “Upcycling The Ocean” together with the HAP Foundation. The ambitious project aims to help remove marine debris in oceans across the world. The collected debris is then used to create Sea Yarn, a kind of filament that is 100% made from PET materials found in the Mediterranean Sea. Today, the project has expanded to Spain with the help of ECOEMBES and to Thailand with the assistance of PTT Global Chemical and the Government of Thailand. This is just an example of Ecoalf’s 'mechanical recycling' philosophy. They also use recycled nylon from carpets and fishing nets, recycled cotton and wool, recycled used tires, and even post-consumer coffee grounds. They have also integrated processes that aim to reduce waste, CO2 emissions, and solid residues, as well as water usage. Currently, they are running a media campaign called #becausethereisnoplanetB which aims to save the oceans by spreading the word about the movement.
These efforts have been facilitated by years of research to ensure that their processes are not only sustainable but also safe. As an example, they dedicated two years of intensive experimentation in order to turn used tyres into flip flops. This considers the fact that tyres usually have metals, fabric, and other potentially hazardous materials.
Ecoalf is also a firm believer in the power of collaboration. Since the company’s birth in 2009, Ecoalf has collaborated with various organizations and foundations to further their agenda. For example, they have created exclusive products for Starbucks using recycled coffee grounds. They have also manufactured an attractive line of accessories for Apple. They have also produced a collection for Swatch employees using recycled fabrics. Ecoalf’s dedication to eco fashion has earned them the Certified B mark, the first in Spain. Certified B companies have higher standards in terms of social and environmental performance, accountability, connection to local resources and labor, among other factors. They have also received numerous awards such as the 2019 Traveler Sostenible & Eco of Condé Nast Traveler for their Ocean waste sneaker.
While a lot about Ecoalf’s identity rests on its advocacies, the brand also offers an interesting range of styles in their products. The brand has now expanded to produce a complete lifestyle collection of outerwear, casual apparel, shoes, and swimwear. Their latest collection for men includes oversized vegan jackets and coats. Their iconic Beret, Asp & St. Morit line of jackets has also received a reconstruction with bolder color contrasts made entirely from vegan materials. Their ‘Siberia’ collection of puffer jackets for women also boasts vegan synthetic filling. Their FELDER FELDER collection which features stylish nylon winter coats has, in fact, won the 2018 Peta Award for the 100% Vegan Collection. The striking hues of their Range Activewear includes the ‘Sidney’ Tech jacket which is made with Sorona, nylon, and PET. The strong colors suggest a sense of dynamism in keeping with Ecoalf’s spirited activism.
They are currently pushing their BecausethereisnoplanetB line of shirts and sweaters for children. The ‘San Diego’ line, which is made of recycled cotton, has a simple yet striking look. Most of their casualwear has this same no-frills aesthetic. Finally, their line of trainers features contrasting color details. One piece that stands out particularly is the ‘Denver’ sneaker which has a mesh sock made of 59% polyester and 41% Sorona. Its sparse silhouette and midnight navy color are easy on the eye and incredibly snappy.
Ecoalf’s 10 years of existence has proven to be fruitful and exciting. As it continues to push for its environmental agenda, we may be able to see more innovations in clothes production. We can only hope that these innovations reverberate across the industry and other parts of the world as well.