The third in the FashMash Pioneers speaker series took us deep into the world of material science with Dan Widmaier, CEO and co-founder of Bolt Threads.
The evening focused on how Bolt Threads is creating advanced materials for the industry including both spider silk and a brand new mycelium leather, which derives from mushrooms.
We are at the beginning of a radical material revolution that will see us steadily move away from the petrochemical-based textiles that dominate much of the industry today, and instead turn to the science of bioengineering to create a more sustainable future.
This has never been more necessary. The fashion industry - like many others around it - is under immense pressure to reduce the damage it does to the planet and the environment in its creation. The actual fabrics used, is one major part of the change that's needed. Fortunately, there are incredible start-ups like Bolt Threads already leading the way - focusing on creating "Better materials for a better world".
We were privy to one of the first views of the new handbag he’s created for Stella Mccartney from this so-called Mylo leather, which will eventually be available to buy later this year. Sustainability, said Dan, is an imperative for the industry that at some point is going to flip and become more important to consumers than performance. In doing so he epitomised the very nature of our talk series - to not only get us thinking about what’s next, but to enable us to understand exactly how that change is being made possible.
“Pioneers are those who talk or create a new language,” he explained, which is of course, exactly what’s he doing.