Fungal dye: the solution to water pollution caused by the harmful textile dyes.

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This project focusses on one of the major problems in the fashion industry: water pollution. This is one of the major problems in the fashion industry.

I believe biodesign can reduce the use of harmful textile dyes. Fungi are a promising source for this. There are different fungal species that create pigments which can be used for textile dyeing. These fungal species can grow on biological waste materials, for example reed or food leftovers.
Fungal dye will have many benefits over synthetic textile dye and other alternatives. One of the benefits is the reduce in the amount of water and energy used during the dyeing process. Besides, it’s even suitable for industrial use. After identifying methods on how to grow the fungi and extract the pigments, fungal dye has been created in cooperation with Westerdijk Fungal Biodiversity Institute. Yellow dye was obtained by the fungus Ashbya Gossypii and red dye is based on the pigments of Monascus Purpureus. In the near future I would like to explore other colour possibilities.

Fungal pigments react differently on various kinds of fabrics. This effect is utilised to create prints. As an inspiration for these prints I observed the chemical structures of the fungal pigments used for the dye. The prints are implemented in garments.

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