Moms and dads, we all know how frustrating it can be to buy clothes for our children just to see them outgrow it after a single wash. Or even worse, for us to buy something that we think will fit, but then the child grows overnight and can’t even squeeze into it!
This is the bane of many parents’ existence, but have you ever wondered how much waste is actually formed because our kids grow like bean sprouts?
It may be the last thing on your mind, but one forward-thinking entrepreneur has been bothered by this fact for a long time. London-based designer Ryan Yasin first noticed there was a problem within the clothing and textile industry when he kept buying clothes for his niece and nephew but they would grow too fast to actually be able to wear them. The 24-year-old was frustrated not only because having to buy clothes all the time posed a huge financial burden to parents but because all this clothing was going to waste.
Now, even though internationally more than 14.3 million tons of donated American textiles help to clothe families worldwide, Yasin believed there was something he could do to help limit the amount of textile waste produced all over the world. So he invented Petit Pli, a line of children’s clothing that grow as they do.
Using scientific principles he studied for his aeronautical engineering degree, Yasin was able to create a pleated lightweight fabric that actually becomes thicker as it expands. The fabric is machine washable, waterproof, and recyclable, and a child can wear the same outfit from three-months-old to three-years-old.
According to the Guardian, Yasin wanted to focus on creating a garment that could last through a child’s initial growth-spurt. He was able to do this by incorporating the idea of “negative Poisson’s ratio,” which means that when stretched, the fabric’s fibers expand in two directions at the same time. This results in a thicker, more durable material that literally stretches as the child grows.
Unfortunately for frugal parents everywhere, Petit Pli isn’t available in retail stores yet. But Yasin vows that when it hits the shelves, he will aim to keep the clothing at a competitive price and will ensure that everyone involved in the production of the material will be paid ethically.