Marine Serre

HOW IT’S REMADE: Getting a jump on Earth Day, French designer Marine Serre is showing exactly how textile discards — from overproduced jacquard towels to vintage crochet tablecloths — are transformed into runway fashions.

Crochet knitted tablecloth, Europe ca. 1970

Crochet knitted tablecloth, Europe ca. 1970.  Courtesy of Marine Serre

In a series of two-minute videos posted to her YouTube channels starting today, Serre reveals the production methods behind several styles in her spring-summer 2020 collection. The surprise is the range of methods, from needle-and-thread simple to laser-guided, computer-assisted complex, and the amount of human handling.

WATCH: Marine Serre Shows How to Upcycle Denim

While the faces of workers are rarely shown, their nimble hands tell touching stories, whether clipping errant threads from a label, guiding a blade through thick stacks of fabrics, or clinking small paper cups of espresso. You may be surprised how extensively irons are used in clothing factories.

Leather deadstock from Italy

Leather deadstock from Italy.  Courtesy of Marine Serre

Serre’s cameras visit production sites in Portugal, France and Italy — some small and modest; others sprawling and high-tech — and pan over giant bagfuls of denim collected in the U.S. in the Nineties or home furnishing fabrics from the Seventies and Eighties. Silk scarves and deadstock leather are also transformed.

Silk scarves from France

Silk scarves from France.  Courtesy of Marine Serre

Titled “Regenerated,” the series underscore’s Serre’s commitment to upcycling, at the core of her young, Paris-based company, and documents how much effort that entails, and how much waste it repurposes. Roughly half of her collection is upcycled, according to a spokesman for the brand.

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