Levi Strauss, a popular jeans brand known for their rugged yet stylish jeans are putting together cutting-edge technology and responsible production. They are introducing a new laser digitizing technique to ethically create designs on its jeans rather than use manual labour.
This new process is done under the moniker Project FLX (Future Led Execution), and it is a technique that cuts out all the harmful chemicals and reduces labour inducive steps in producing jeans finishes which usually number from 18-24 steps down to just 3. Eventually, Levi will be using this method all across the board in their supply chain.
“Our first step in the new process is to photograph the jean, and then we take that and illustrate it in a way that the laser can interpret. So what used to happen traditionally 8, 10, 12 minutes with manual applications, we can now execute with the laser in 90 seconds or so,” said Bart Sights, Levi’s VP in technical innovation, who leads Levi’s innovation lab called Eureka lab. The lasers use infrared to lightly scratch designs into the top layer of the jean’s surface, creating the faded outlines and tears.
For the past three decades, Levi has been using hand finishing and a chemical process to create the worn and faded designs on their denim. The company is committed to a 2020 goal of zero discharge of hazardous chemicals Additionally, the project will let Levi designer’s use a new designing tool to create different patterns and finishes on jeans using a tablet-like prototype.
The company states that this new digital tool will cut development in half, from months to weeks and sometimes, only days. Those digital files created can also be sent the laser machine to create a prototype or even to a vendor for large-scale manufacturing. Levi anticipates that the digital platform will be fully implemented in 2020.
Sourced from The Verge