British fashion brand Stella McCartney has unveiled a sleeveless bodysuit adorned with Radiant Matter‘s bioplastic sequins made from tree cellulose.
The skin-tight all-in-one, which was made in Stella McCartney‘s London atelier, is embellished with hundreds of shimmering sequins called BioSequins.
The sequins were developed by biomaterials company Radiant Matter as an alternative to the petroleum-based plastic options on the market, which can contain harmful carcinogenic chemicals.
Founder of Radiant Matter Elissa Brunato believes that there is a “gap in the market” for a more sustainable sequin for garments.
“Our BioSequins are the response to a gap in the market between sustainable and aesthetic parameters that the industry struggled to close,” Brunato told Dezeen.
“When I used to work in fashion design studios, I felt first-hand the discrepancy between the beauty of the craft, the narratives being told and the disappointingly toxic material choices I was confronted with,” she said.
“Radiant Matter is working on solutions that are healthy for the planet without compromising aesthetics.”
Each disc-shaped BioSequin is made from renewable polymer cellulose extracted from trees. The cellulose’s material properties mean that it naturally reflects light and makes the sequins sparkle.
By contrast, traditional plastic sequins are often coated or finished with synthetic, toxic or metalised parts to give them their shine.
“Our BioSequins are structurally coloured, meaning that the colour stems from the material’s innate structure rather than from dyes, metals or minerals,” Brunato explained.
“Conventional sequins are made of a polyester film called Mylar or polyvinyl chloride (PVC), which cause particularly significant environmental and health risks – producing toxic, bio-accumulative chemicals, including carcinogens, such as phthalates and hormone disruptors.”
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