Open Access Research Article

Ecology of Matter and the Surface Design in the Leather Fashion Industry

Marlena Pop1*, Carmen Gaidau2, Olga Niculescu3 and Traian Foiasi4

1Senior Researcher, National Research Institute for Textile and Leather, Romania

2Head of the Leather Research Department, National Research Institute for Textile and Leather, Romania

3Specialist in the leather finishing techniques and technologies, National Research Institute for Textile and Leather, Romania

4Specialist in the footwear design for fashion, National Research Institute for Textile and Leather, Romania

Corresponding Author

Received Date: October 21, 2019;  Published Date: October 29, 2019


Leather is a natural and durable material, unmatched by any synthetic product in terms of hygienic and protective properties. The processing of the oldest fiber-based material used for man’s clothing combines the highest knowledge in chemistry with traditional craftsmanship. Nowadays leather industry is directly related to meat consumption and declares that it is by definition a sustainable activity through reclaiming a valuable byproduct. The challenge regarding the leather processing sustainability involves important steps from raw material preservation through wet-white tanning and more ecological surface finishing by using nanomaterials.

Our contributions regarding the innovative processes for chromium salts reduction and elimination from hide and skin tanning will be presented. Ecological tanning of hides and skins will be approached with new ecological mineral tanning, vegetable and organic materials in view of cleaner wastewater releasing and more biodegradable leather design. The leather surface finishing will take into consideration the use of multifunctional nanoparticles for smart leathers or handmade painting on vegetable tanned leathers for creative industries.

Surface Design is an interface between material, technology and consumer, being both a scientific and technical interface and a socio-cultural one. In the fashion industry the added value is only reflected by an efficient surface design, but the Surface Design is not just a type of finish, it is an art-science act that, if well-known and coordinated, can be spectacular and sustainable at the same time.

Laboratory experiments conducted by interdisciplinary teams will highlight the structure of cultural sustainability in fashion products, associated with the scientific sustainability of leather chemistry oriented towards the ecology of materials. The whole approach is the result of research projects carried out in the institute together with the industry.

Keywords: Leather; Ecology; Surface design; Collaborative research

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