Trash-2-Cash Master Case: 0° Shirt

Paper author Simone Haslinger explains the Ioncell-F fibre technology to partners at the beginning of the Trasn-2-Cash project

Our Trash-2-Cash prototypes are on their way to Dutch Design Week 2018, which opens this Saturday, where we’ll be displaying them for the very first time. In anticipation of their grand unveiling we’ve been giving a little preview of the 6 Master Case ‘stories’ and prototype products that we’ve developed. Today, the 0° Shirt.

Master Case summary

Our goal was to design a shirt that had as close to a 0° impact on the environment as possible. The result is a shirt made from Ioncell-F fibres, a material produced from waste cotton textiles. Its pale blue colour comes from the blue cotton feedstock, meaning no bleaching was needed, further reducing the material’s impact.


The challenge

Cotton is a popular choice for menswear, but increased demand has resulted in huge environmental impacts in its production. The Trash-2-Cash designers wanted a fabric with a soft luxurious feel that, like cotton, is also cool to touch. Ideally this new material would not only save cotton production by using waste materials instead, but also use fewer processes in its production and create less waste during garment manufacture. Designers wanted it to be valued by its owner and kept for longer, and when it finally is no longer useful it can be recycled. In other words a shirt as close to 0° impact on the planet as possible. Not much to ask!

The innovation

Trash-2-Cash scientists used a low-impact method to regenerate waste cotton into new Ioncell-F fibres. Instead of bleaching away the colour (which would have added an environmental impact) the colour was left in, meaning that the blue textiles that went into the process produced pale blue fibres. These were woven by Trash-2-Cash manufacturers into a luxurious soft fabric with a beautiful drape. 

The Trash-2-Cash designers used zero-waste pattern-cutting techniques to ensure there were no offcuts left after the tailored shirt had been constructed. Additionally, an innovative colouring service then allows the owner to re-colour their shirt over its lifetime, prolonging its life until it is finally recycled.

Trash-2-Cash? About the project

As we all know, one resource that’s becoming more abundant is waste. The idea of recycling textile waste has been popular for decades, but current mechanical methods give poor quality fabrics suitable only for industrial applications, like insulation, and the upcycling of pre-consumer textile waste into products is impossible to scale. 

Trash-2-Cash (T2C) proposes a new model where textile waste is regenerated chemically - resulting in new plastics and textiles that are the same quality as new materials, to make products that are industrially replicable and infinitely recyclable.

Come to our showcase at Klokgebouw during Dutch Design Week 2018 and decide for yourselves whether we have been able to make trash in to cash!


The consortium:

Academic and industry designers have been collaborating with scientists and engineers over the last three years to produce these new materials from textile waste. It’s a project that is as much about the way in which these people collaborate as what they have produced together. 

The 18 partners from 10 countries are showing six brand new material prototypes comprised of new, recycled and recyclable apparel and automotive materials and concepts. We are also sharing a new way of working – Design-Driven Material Innovation (DDMI) – outlining how science, design and industry can input into the process from beginning to end.

Trash-2-Cash is a collaboration of the following organisations:

-      Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, Finland

-      IK4-CIDETEC Technology Centre, IK4 Research Alliance, Spain

-      The Copenhagen Business School (CBS), Denmark

-      Grado Zero Innovation (GZI), Italy

-      MAIER, Spain

-      Material ConneXion Italia Srl, Italy

-      Reima, Finland

-      RISE Research Institutes of Sweden

-      Celanese, Italy

-      SOEX, Germany

-      SÖKTAŞ, Turkey

-      Swerea, IVF, Sweden (from October 1st2018, RISE,Sweden)

-      TEKO, Sweden

-      Tekstina, Slovenia

-      University of the Arts London (UAL), United Kingdom

-      VanBerlo,The Netherlands

-      VTT, Finland


About Dutch Design Week:

In October of each year, Dutch Design Week (DDW) takes place in Eindhoven. The biggest design event in Northern Europe presents work and ideas of more than 2600 designers to more than 335,000 visitors from home and abroad. In more than hundred locations across the city, DDW organises and facilitates exhibitions, lectures, prize ceremonies, networking events, debates and festivities.


Exhibition details:

Saturday 20th October – Sunday 28th October 2018

Opening hours: 11:00 – 18:00


Klokgebouw Cultuurhallen

Klokgebouw 50,

5617 AB Eindhoven,

The Netherlands


DDW ‘Basic’ ticket:

€16 ‘early bird’ ticket booked before 20th September from

€18 full price advance purchase tickets

€20 at the door


Students receive a 30% discount. Premium tickets are also available from the DDW website.