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Material Is Your Business

Deep dive into MATERIALS AND MANUFACTURING with the QUEEN OF RAW Stephanie Benedetto, SAVE THE GARMENT DISTRICT's Samanta Cortes, and business strategist Rob Sanchez. Join them for in-depth interviews with industry notables and insights into trends, business and technology within the material sciences industry.

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023 – Mercedes Gonzalez of Global Purchasing Companies – Moments of Opportunity

Strategy and brand development for retail and emerging designers… Mercedes Gonzalez, Director of Global Purchasing Companies (a fashion strategy and brand development agency, planning and implementing strategies for retailers and emerging designers – (bio)) joins Samanta Cortes, Stephanie Benedetto, and Rob Sanchez on location at TexWorld USA in New York. Becoming a negotiator, matching American retail sensibilities, and buyers vs. accountants Gonzalez reveals her work as a buyer, with a forte in international business, moments of opportunity, how selling old ladies polyester dresses is not glamorous, and why that led her to being a buyer in pursuit of glamour and ending up working with knit tops up to $10. How Gonzalez developed a reputation as a good negotiator, how speaking Spanish led to advancement, her current 19 years-old company, the impact of matching international stores with the sensibilities of American stores, discoveries of a mall developer in Siberia, how advising emerging designers helped raise sales but in 2009 when online sales started were soaring, the importance of timing for opportunity, why Gonzalez has been called the dream crusher (vs. nightmare avoider), and how buyers are not buyers but instead accountants. The avocado effect, arguing sustainability, and shifting consciousness The Avocado Effect (paying because you want it because of a good story or great feature), and a debate about the word “sustainable”. Do sustainability, ethical, fair trade, etc. make a product more valuable if the brand or designer don’t understand it? Why a minimal standard should revolve around basic human needs. Being the best in any product category. Shifting consciousness from checking a box to making a difference, and whose job is that? How if people want to abuse the system, they will. Fair cost vs. price, Cuba, and global privilege Pursuing a fair relationship between cost and retail price, chasing the big picture, and the ideas of global standardization vs. one factory at a time. And personal questions in a round of Remnants cover how communism works in Cuba, no orphanages in Cuba, being an Island girl, being bossy, talking a lot and not sharing. Plus, global privilege of communication offers a huge opportunity for brands and retailers.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


25 Aug 2017

Rank #1

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009 – Julius Sobizack of ZSK Embroidery Machines – Old Makes New Possible

Modern uses for embroidery Machines with ZSK… Julius Sobizack (President of ZSK Stickmaschinen (ZSK Embroidery Machines), the market leader in single and multi-head industrial embroidery machines) joins hosts Samanta Cortes and Stephanie Benedetto in the MouthMedia Network Studio at Voyager HQ. New uses in manufacturing, 3D printing vs. embroidery, and zig-zag stitches Sobizack discusses developing what was there before on the field of technical embroidery to create a new field solving 21st Century problems. Logos, lettering, embellishments are also a big industry of embroidery, and used in fashion and the home textile world. Heated car seats a great example of the use of embroidery, with wires stitched to foam or backing that is electrified and heats the seats. Different kinds of embroidery heads with different functions, a wide variety of materials that can be laid down “fixing” with a zig-zag stitch, a “wire hit” detection system to avoid undetected damage, creating electrodes for the wearable market, why embroidery machines are used for these jobs, and how frames can move in X and Y directions with almost no loss of very expensive material. ZSK producing the machine, consulting and supporting work for customers, comparing laying down of fiber vs. 3d printing, and how embroidery requires more human interaction than 3D printing and other methods. Creating new products using old methods, sequins, and wearables Carbon glass fibers and normal threads, and zig-zag stitches to hold materials down, most products different than typical embroidery which creates the final product because other products will need many processes for the final products. ZSK selling in more than 100 countries, and using sequin devices to hold down electronic devices. With wearable tech, power gets woven in with embroidery machines, delivering solutions with solar and batteries, how these kind of projects lead to development in embroidery methods, and creating interest in expanding development in US. Traveling, business attire and brunch Personal questions in a round of “Remnants” cover traveling without a laptop, work as a passion and hobby, movies, Sunday AM brunch, fast developing countries, the difference in business attire in difference cultures.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


27 Apr 2017

Rank #2

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030 – Marni Leopold, Lucia Palacios, and Mary Marino – Peru, Guatemala, and Africa

Material and textile matchmaking in other countries… Marni Leopold (Luxury Sales & Management – ‎Trade Commission of Peru), Lucia Palacios (Marketing and Promotion Director of Vestex, Apparel and Textile Association of Guatemala), and Mary Marino (Trade Linkage Consultant, USAID Contractor at East Africa Trade and Investment Hub), join Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes on location at Sourcing at Coterie. Powered by Sennheiser. Peru Marni Leopold (Luxury Sales & Management – ‎Trade Commission of Peru) discusses her role as a matchmaker, making introductions between USA designers and brands with Peruvian manufacturers, materials and market. How the attraction to Peru starts with quality, some of the best raw materials in the world, fibers, fabrics, and Peru has a free trade agreement, so materials are duty free. Promoting manufacturing, a trade show, how Leopold became involved, a focus on Hema Cotton and Alpaca, and a love of ceviche. Guatemala Lucia Palacios (Marketing and Promotion Director of Vestex, Apparel and Textile Association of Guatemala) shares how her organization represents textile mills, apparel manufacturers, and services and trimmings, making a fully integrated supply chain for the apparel industry. For the last 8 years the leading export industry in Guatemala has been apparel, as 50% of the value of exports. How the country is competitive in knit tops, synthetic tops has been growing, fabric mills from spinning to delivery, innovating culture, and how the country has been thought narrowly but is not just offering artisanal or handcrafted products. Palacios comments on the challenges in moving supply chain and growing, competition in Haiti, Asia, and Central America — and eating outside of Peru. East Africa Mary Marino (Trade Linkage Consultant, USAID Contractor at East Africa Trade and Investment Hub) touches on how her non-profit is a facilitator based in Nairobi, Kenya, to educate on the US and East African sides about AGOA (African Growth Opportunity Act), about duty free opportunities into the US, and how component parts can be imported and originated anywhere in the world. How her work is a matchmaking process, how East Africa offers very unusual techniques unique to that area, how much of the world incorrectly assumes language barriers, and misconceptions about AGOA such as not needing to source fabrics and trims from Africa to benefit. And how pricing is strategic in relationships and opportunities for duty free access offers advantages. Plus — Florence Italy as a second home.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


27 Oct 2017

Rank #3

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003 – Sabine Le Chatelier of Premiere Vision – The Lively Flow of Materials and Fashion

In-house fashion team at global textile event with Premiere Vision… Sabine Le Chatelier (bio), Associate Fashion Director of Premiere Vision (the global textile event for North American fashion professionals) joins hosts Rob Sanchez, Samanta Cortes and Marc Raco on location at Premiere Vision 2016 in New York. In-house fashion, fashion identity, and sharing ideas Le Chatelier shares the nature and purpose of the fashion team at this trade show, as a unique internal, in-house fashion team, and as part of the DNA of Premier Vision. How brands can source material for upcoming garment collections, the path of constructing and creating the fashion identity of the season every six months, and the particular process based on international meetings and gathering and sharing ideas and concerns about the future. A six month window, trends, and sensuality of fabric The future of materials, how fashion is a fast evolving business with less than six months for fast changes, a permanent work on the future, and pushing fast and crating a consensus. How trends are developed, giving a meaning and story about a color each season, how exhibitors benefit from the sharing of access and information while developing their collections, the tactile connections with fibers, and how the surprises are Le Chatelier’s favorites. Sensuality of materials, how fabrics are more than visual and all about five senses, the complexity of transmitting this combined information, and keeping the lively flow of fashion. Cultural storytelling, hobbies, and a musical regret Personal questions in a segment of “Remnants” cover the complexity of storytelling in various cultures and international communication, walking vs. working, and a musical regret.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


15 Mar 2017

Rank #4

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028 – Ronnye Shamam of Shamron Mills – Not Run of the Mill

Garments and textile items for healthcare, linen supply and industrial settings… Ronnye Shamam, President of Shamron Mills (a manufacturer of all types of garments and textile items for healthcare, linen supply and other industrial settings – (profile)), joins Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes at the MouthMedia Network Studios powered by Sennheiser. Origins, mandating quality, and challenges Shamam discusses how the company started with hospital gowns, and sells to distributors, how for many the quantities that Shamron Mills are not important enough to get involved in, and largely manufacturing overseas. Mandating that color, fasteners and fabric stand up to industrial laundries and high temperatures to sterilize, drapes in operating rooms that must be certain sized with specific openings, customized for superstar doctors, and children sleepwear regulations. Production locations, changing and modifying the business to stay aligned with customers and industry. The challenges of fewer mills and converters, having to adapt to make more overseas. How small runs and quick turnaround requires Made in USA. Working with distributors, supply chains, and technology Managing expenses for small runs, and being so specific and small in grand scheme of things with the result of buyers being willing to pay additional bucks. How Shamron Mills sells to distributors, not to hospitals directly. Being an expert and leader in this niche. Bright colors and patterns, how garments for other industries are simpler and not as tailored. And considerations for certification. Supply chains, how it is harder to find textiles, buying from mills less and more from jobbers, and needing to feel energized for the future. Relying on the website as a tool for the customers, how Shamron Mills has always been on the technological frontline. The future of the company, the detachable collar, and a new idea Whether she will sell the company that is so personal, technical fabrics, but institutions don’t want to pay for them, and whether they last in the laundry. And a new idea for a special hospital gown. Using a unique set of experiences and knowledge. And how she started her business, being grateful for a mentor, and angel, and someone who trusted her. The magic of the detachable collar, going back to her roots, an email from the government leads to an all-female outdoors trip to Mexico, and a big birthday party in Nice. Don’t be afraid, get joy, and positive people.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


29 Sep 2017

Rank #5

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053 – Panel – Social Responsibility, Sustainability, and Proper Governance

The impact of social responsibility, sustainability, and proper governance on the growth and expansion of companies… Rob Sanchez, CEO of Mouth Media Network, moderates an impressive expert panel on material development, governance, and sustainability as part of an event at Spring Place sponsored by Financial Executives  International, including: Karina Givargisoff, Founder and Editor in Chief of MISSION Magazine Beth Colleton, Founder of Purpose Strategies Danielle Joseph, Investment Officer at Closed Loop Partners William Reinisch, Venture Partner at Paladin Capital Group In this episode: The importance of consideration of social responsibility at early stages of planning a company, ESG and sustaibablity, in idea generation stage, how this has dramatically changed and become complete sector and way of thinking about it How for the next generation this wont be an add on, will be a fundamental part of building an industry Doesn’t work well when it is down the hall Using for growth, generating more opportunity, turning it into value, the more growth the more material a company is saving, correlated to growth, the more you can do — the more money you make Structuring business models around turning a waystream into a revenue stream Evolving, next generation space EVRNU, Bolt Thread as great examples of innovation Growing and scaling Gen Z and Millennials have the most stake in it, and trying to take into account their buying habits and influence, listening to a younger audience helps us keep on track to grow in the right direction Scalability in creating efficiencies in supply chain and recycling defective garments When fabric technologies create rcyclaaed textiles indistinguishable from originals Repurposing textiles Driving revenue generation by allowing people to purchase items that support the changing habits The planning side of raw materials, how we must be thinking about resilience A lot of unanswered question about how to integrate sustainable raw materials into the manufacturing process Making sure to avoid seeming tone deaf to the public, and the important of governance Investors looking at long-term value in companies, and the importance of sustainability The critical nature of transparency, and to lead from the top and follow through that it is a driving force and part of the DNA of a company The up and coming work force wants purpose in their employer, is a valuable part of retention strategy Critical: an actionable purpose strategy that is authentic Photo credits: Jason Drago, ARENAISSANCE FILMS See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


26 Jul 2018

Rank #6

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011 – Sim Gulati of Dropel – Life Proof 2.0

Performance-based natural, cotton fibers via material science and process technology with Dropel… Sim Gulati, CoFounder and CEO of Dropel Fabrics, which makes clothing life-proof by developing performance-based natural, cotton fibers through material science and process technology – (bio), joins Samanta Cortes and Stephanie Benedetto at MouthMedia Network’s studio at VoyagerHQ. Bridging science and fashion, functionalizing clothing, and retail applications Gulati shares the genesis of Dropel, and how Gulati’s background and family’s work was a crucial ingredient, seeing innovation in fabrics but little in natural fabrics. How the goal is to bridge material science and fashion such as stain and oil repellency, wrinkle free, antimicrobial, and use these properties previously reserved for synthetics and apply them to natural fabrics. How in 10 years all clothing can be functionalized even at a nano-fiber level, and the road to that is via advanced fiber modification. Taking scientists with experience with application of fibers along with people who are supply chain experts, and taking materials science breakthroughs and applying them into the retail environment. Specific retail applications and campaigns, socializing the idea of innovative textiles in the market, and positioning Dropel as a materials science innovation arm for retailers — such as a hydrophobic cotton that both resists on the outside and picks up moisture on the inside. Licensing and royalties, a sustainability mission, and bringing innovation to the US Every Dropel fabric has unique chemistry and process, which impacts licensing and royalties, etc. The evolution of the ethos and branding of Dropel, and further developing out the sustainability mission. Fashion for Good, and PFC-free “recipes”. A change of name, looking ahead at development in the US for R and D and production, how Dropel looking at advancing fiber and nanotechnologies and a lab in Brooklyn in development, what it will take for manufacturing to come back to the US, the opportunities to further develop innovation in materials to expand garment and fashion industry, the performance of Dropel fabrics, allowing customers to think about fabrics in ways they never have before, and how that has driven business strategy. Imaging fabrics, hypnotizing machines, and the future is close Personal Questions in “Remnants” covers duplicating Gulati, the dream of fabric that grows and shrinks, how the future is closer than we think, and embroidery machine hypnotism. Dropel on Fashion Is Your Business Episode 34 Mister French Cradle to Cradle See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


10 May 2017

Rank #7

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052 – Joe Castaldo of The Style Council – The Speed of Fashion

Setting the standard for both hand painting and computer aided design with The Style Council… Joe Castaldo, President of The Style Council (the USA’s leading textile design and service studio), joins Stephanie Benedetto and Samantha Cortes in the MouthMedia Network studios powered by Sennheiser. In this episode: The way business keeps pace with the pace of changing fashion How Castaldo’s background as a clothing designer provides value The process creative people go through, travel, being able to look at every designer’s work, life, what’s in museums, and on the street, and bring it into what the Style Council does Putting together trends, giving the intel to artists who will do the best with it Predicting colors, palettes Designing prints Creating and impacting CAD software Going back to handpainting, and how that helps with copyright concerns, products so different than others, and that luxury has expense It is like a science project how dyes and heat react to fabrics, and how The Style Council is constantly pushing the envelope with what’s possible Castaldo works with 4-5 people who have been there 36 years, and his sense of responsibility and obligation, like family, The fight to be organic and natural given the cost How working with designers can connect you to the world Education vs. spirit of wanting to change the world See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


29 Jun 2018

Rank #8

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050 – Julie Golden and Amy Adair of ADAY Clothing – Technically Conscious Clothing

Repurposing everyday clothing with one of a kind intelligent fabrics… Julie Golden (Operations Manager) Amy Adair (Production) of ADAY Clothing (consciously designed clothing reinvented with technical fabrics) join Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes in the MouthMedia Network studios powered by Sennheiser. In this episode: How ADAY Clothing was founded by Meg He an active runner  and Nina Faulhaber a competitive gymnast, different in everyday activities and clothing they wore at work Comfy, great for travel, filling void in market Sweat wicking, breathable , all stretchy, many are wrinkle resistant, all machine washable, making life easier Company started buying from stock fabric companies environmentally conscious, and eventually developed own fabrics as they’ve grown, which drape nicely, and polyester is recycled All about seeking fibers and fabrics that feel great or have properties they love, no internal R and D team developing fibers Aim to get the best of both worlds – performance and feel beautiful to touch An ethos of minimalism Using one fabric in a garment How the company doesn’t think in seasons, wanting clothing to be a staple worn multiple times a week for different purposes Creating a hero piece that can be worn over something else “Something borrowed shirt” the most popular item A color palette primarily of neutrals and blacks, navys, launching some greens As colors go in and out of seasons, that palette allows clothing to be more versatile despite trends, including whit Initial problems in construction were identified and solved by customer feedback Supply chain, some US, some internationally – criteria for choosing factories includes both technical and sustainability abilities Why ADAY started working with a Portuguese factory How design helps manage return rates New developments in new collection – “Experiments in Conscious Design” – focusing on working out how to optimize an improve the way they are designing A jacket made from 41 recycled plastic bottles Working with women doing amazing things like Britt Bergmeister. ODM/ODC (Off Duty Model, On Duty Citizen), and Summer Rayne Oakes, model and super environmental activist, who are using their platform for their efforts The company culture Moving from corporate America to a fashion startup Considering a one year rotation in London See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


11 Jun 2018

Rank #9

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007 – Guglielmo Olearo – A Deep Love for Materials

Inside Premiere Vision, a global textile event… Guglielmo Olearo (bio), International Exhibitions Director of Premiere Vision (the global textile event for North American fashion professionals) joins hosts Rob Sanchez, Samanta Cortes and Marc Raco on location at Premiere Vision 2016 in New York. History, passion, and learning from Italian fashion culture Olearo discusses being in charge of development of international showrooms, and the birth of Premiere Vision in 1973, its growth into an international show, the desire of wanting to see collections in advance, and the most recent expansion in Istanbul. He talks about different shows for specific markets, his passion for textile and fantastic material in Italy, coming from a background in engineering for chemical materials, always waning to work in the fashion industry, how with emotion and passion everything is possible, and a common deep love for the textile industry. The love for redefining industry products every six months, and the exciting challenge of re-designing and innovating the show every six month. Italian culture, and respect for Italian designers want to learn about materials and build from there. The Italian tradition of developing a sense of aesthetics, and being an industry which starts with care of the detail. And the draw of knowing how to transform something that is 2D to 3D. The next wave, evolution, and smell The shift in industry thinking, the next wave for next show, a huge change in menswear moving toward more casual products, and how all exhibitors have been carefully chosen, giving visitors confidence in the quality. Witnessing the evolution of the market, seeing the future offering more and more fashion related digital activity, from digital printing and 3D printing, augmentation, changes on organization side, and a focus on sustainability. Personal questions in a round of “Remnants” covers Italian mountains, the influence of Premiere Vision on personal style, and the impact of smell.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


14 Apr 2017

Rank #10

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031 – Jason Robinson of UPS – A Force of Change

How UPS strategically partners with businesses, from shortening routes, improving supply chains, developing delivery by drones, sustainability and humanitarianism, and data and analytics… Jason Robinson, Director of Marketing for the North Atlantic Region for UPS, joins Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes in the MouthMedia Network studios powered by Sennheiser. (Robinson’s profile) Empowering competition, drones, and Orion Robinson shares his love of the complexity of movement, how he fell into his job after growing up in UPS out of high school and worked his way up, and being in a new role only around since 2010. What UPS offers businesses to compete with large platforms, the impact of same day delivery, and how UPS creates challenges and forces change, the need for partnerships, and keeping the finger on the pulse. Drones, related regulations/policies, testing drones after the hurricane in Houston, logistics, weight limits, restrictions, how drones can help in rural areas, and challenges of introducing a new technology into existing infrastructure and fully deploying quickly. And the incredible tool Orion, which shortens the routes of drivers, saving millions of dollars on fuel. Education, reducing the carbon footprint, and the UPS Package Lab Industry training business about consumer expectations, asking consumers about behavior online, time in transit, custom shipping, the increase of mobile and loss of tablet activity. Sustainability and humanitarian focuses, increasing efficiency and safety by saving mileage and fuel by minimizing left hand turns. Material and packaging options for recycled materials, looking. And the UPS Package Lab has an eco packaging program, which can help with marketing. Data and analytics, fly fishing, and being a strategic partner Robust data and analytics from UPS and making those available to businesses, giving the delivery driver the opportunity to go into houses with a doorbell program, and the impact of residential vs. commercial. Personal questions cover fitting in family time, fly fishing in the Catskills, hiking trails, bucket list cultural experiences and wishes, Norway, and New Zealand (and, again, fly fishing). And UPS My Choice, and being strategic partners instead of a vendor.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


11 Nov 2017

Rank #11

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002 – Chris Hipps of Archroma – Full of Color

Color-matching and dyes… Chris Hipps (bio), Global Director of Archroma Color Management, joins hosts Rob Sanchez, Samanta Cortes and Stephanie Benedetto on location at Premiere Vision 2016 in New York. Supply chains, lighting, and information meets color Hipps discusses the work that Archroma does in custom color dying and custom matching, making sure colors can be made in the supply chain, and producing products that designers use to create pallets and matching colors. How color is one of the first things customers see, how Archroma works with pretty much everyone in mass, including specialty, outdoor, swimwear, and touches every product category. Larger companies are more developed with processes. Hipps loves educating and helping to streamline processes. Importance considerations of lighting, how inspiration comes at a high level and then executed on many different materials, different dyes used for different materials. Finding a target color achievable on multiple substrates. And the way Archoma is as much in the information business as in the color business, connecting the physical swatch to web for additional information, making information mobile-accessible, and the technology of color. Color Atlas, responding quickly to supply chains, and RSLs Color Atlas connects the digital with physical and works as a companion with a physical color book. Trend forecasting, how trend is where color can originate, converting trend company colors into things that can be produced, being on the cutting edge of technology and working on matching, being able to rapidly respond to supply chains as a driving force behind Color Atlas, the way companies can’t wait as long to know what will produce, and the ability to select color and have it available to supply chain within 24 hours. Color standards, dyes and chemicals to execute that dying, working with Restricted Substances Lists, how Hipps developed a passion, and the science of color. The importance of a light box with standardized lighting and a spectrometer. Favorite colors, drumming and flying, and crayons In a round of “Remnants”, personal questions reveals a favorite color, drumming and aviation, and the earliest memory of color consciousness, and the 64 pack of Crayola Crayons. References: Jessica Colaluca, Design Seeds Color Association of America See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


8 Mar 2017

Rank #12

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029 – Clay Hickson of WRAP – Sweatshop Watchdog

Watchdog for ethical manufacturing… Clay Hickson (profile), VP of Strategy and Business Development at WRAP (Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production), a non-profit organization “sweatshop watchdog” making sure manufacturers are ethical manufacturers, joins hosts Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes on location at Sourcing at Coterie. Powered by Sennheiser. Certification and education, demands for ethical sourcing, and a history of concerns Hickson discusses how materials are building blocks and sources of information, and how WRAP provides certifications and educational activities, doing it last year in more than 2500 factories in more than 40 countries. He reveals who pays for the costs and how many stakeholders and customers are demanding ethical sourcing including socially responsible investors. A look at child labor, forced labor, and structural integrity of building, along with the history of ethical sourcing concerns. Auditing, local laws and conventions, and Africa The importance of unannounced audit is discussed, and a look into WRAP as a small organization with 25 full time staff and most accreditations performed by third party auditors from reputable firms. How WRAP has zero tolerance policies, but not necessarily always permanently blacklists manufacturers. What constitutes forced labor, defining child labor internationally, and the importance of following both local laws and international conventions. Creating corrective action plans, and a growing presence in Africa. A role model, The China Guy, and connections Personal questions in a round of “Remnants” cover a role-model speech teacher in school has been important to Hickson as he tries to effect better international communication, optimism and positivity, how “one person’s armpit is another person’s paradise”, Amsterdam, being ‘The China Guy”, and the way connections, seeing people as potential mentors and staying connected is so important.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


14 Oct 2017

Rank #13

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010 – Tricia Carey of Lenzing – A Win-Win Story of Cellulose Fibers

Man-made cellulose fibers with Lenzing Fibers… Tricia Carey, Director of Global Business Development for Lenzing Fibers, a company manufacturing and marketing man-made cellulose fibers (bio), joins Stephanie Benedetto, Samanta Cortes and guest host Marc Raco on location at TexWorld USA 2017. TexWorld, measuring softness, and blending Carey discusses Lenzing’s man-made cellulosic fiber, all from wood pulp from trees, which are ingredients of manufacturers and retailers around the world. She shares how being at shows like TexWorld allows convening, getting together with industries, yarn spinners and fabric mills, exchanging info, and how nothing takes the place of face to face meetings. The Lenzing Innovation Center, highlighting a new fabric concept TENCEL blended with wool for premium fabrics for high-end fashion. A focus on softness, with a measurement of softness demonstration between two fabrics, how everyone is looking to call out the value a garment has and being able to quantify claims, how there is great compatibility to blend with other fibers, blending as a huge trend, creating a unique mix that adds performance, strength or softness to garment. Range of product use, closed loop, and Made in USA End products, how Lenzing makes 1 million tons of fiber, is a $2 billion company, making baby wipes, facial masks, top of bed sheets, towels, socks, denim, active wear, and industrial applications. The importance and advantages of a closed loop circular system, using wood pulp from trees, adding a solvent, extruding via spinnerets, creating Tencel, and how many brands require it. A closed loop can reuse the solvent at 99.4-99.6 %, sustainability, economic benefit, a win-win story, environmentally responsible, how Lenzing has always manufactured with environment in mind, the importance of Made in USA, the manufacturing facility in Mobile, AL. How planning a $295 Million expansion there is a sign from an Austrian company to commitment to manufacture in the US. History, international innovation, and a travel story that keeps giving The history of Lenzing, how Tricia came to be in her position, where she started, graduating FIT, a domestic heat transfer company, then fabric buying at a women’s sports apparel company, and extensive travel. International implications in innovation, including knit applications out of Korea, and with denim a lot happening out of Turkey and Pakistan are both innovative. Garment production in Central America, and more on Made in America keeping up with innovation within the US. Accessibility for designers, Carved in Blue for explaining what can be done with denim, and a fabric certification program to be eligible for hangtags. How Lenzing doesn’t just make fiber, do a lot more. Favorite cities, Barcelona, Munich, NYC, Shanghai. Weird travel experiences, crawling out the window, and Fitbit as a must-have.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


3 May 2017

Rank #14

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033 – Pete Santora of SOFTWEAR Automation – Robots and Bananas

Autonomous sewn good worklines for home hoods, footwear and apparel… Pete Santora, Chief Commercial Officer for SOFTWEAR Automation (an Atlanta-based machine vision and robotics startup), joins “Fashion Is Your Business” hosts Pavan Bahl and Marc Raco along with guest host Veronika Harbick (CEO, Co-founder & 3D Knitting Programmer for Thursday Finest) in the MouthMedia Network studios powered by Sennheiser. Harbick also offers an announcement about her company. (Santora’s profile) Genesis with DARPA, robots vs. jobs, Made in USA, and finding your wife in Whole Foods Santora reveals the genesis of the company, being started by DARPA, and in accordance with the Berry Amendment, requiring the Department of Defense to give procurement preference to domestically produced, manufactured, or home-grown products. Giving attention to the fact that manufacturers are aging out of seamstresses, the growing need for automation in sewing, and the new the ability to scale the creation of goods, anywhere in the world, not just where you can find labor. How apparel manufacturing is manufacturing, fielding questions about loss of jobs, automation vs. robots, and fighting a cloud of fear about robots. How the majority of labor will not be replaced for decades, robots are just tools, and a real timeline of change and adaptation of new set of tools. The requirement to be in the US for SOFTWEAR, and how that stance is working, and bringing manufacturing here, the challenges of change because of generational people and legacy thinking, and how they can be slow to adapt. The tipping point of sustainability is at hand, and personal concerns vs. corporate concerns. Plus, snack time inspires a story of Santora meeting his wife in Whole Foods, his time as a professional soccer player, consuming bananas to play sports — and a droid makes an appearance in the studio. How the SEWBOTS work, what a brand is, and deconstructing the automation chain Being a ten-year-old startup with 8 years of R and D, focusing on how to survive as a company, using technology to build a company that works no matter the economic climate, and Alli Baba’s gigantic technology fund as an indication that something major taking place. How the SEWBOT technology works, the way it was conceived coming fro professor, the role of Georgia Tech in wearables with the first wearable tech shirt and much of the IP around wearable tech. Accomplishing proof of concept for machine vision, how goods go through entire process fully, allowing on demand and local production. Determining what a brand is these days, what the pieces are. The need to make in America while keeping quality, implanting sustainability and remaining competitive, and losing the guilt of not buying Made in America. Plus, the Sourcing Summit, having the job discovering how the company could fail, and deconstructing the automation chain to make sure brands can make goods the way they want to while keeping it sustainable. Soccer, droids, and why kids should run toward robotics Personal questions with Off the Grid cover remote control airplane assembly, and not getting it to work. Being crushed, joining a robotics club, soccer teams and the profound unbalance of Italy not making the soccer playoffs, women’s soccer vs. men’s soccer, why the U.S. doesn’t have a style, soccer tennis, a robotic film costar, and automation integrating with the lives of kids. Also, running towards robotics, and a desire to meet crazy people. Thursday Finest Plus, a special announcement from Veronika Harbick about a new chapter for Thursday Finest.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

1hr 39mins

23 Nov 2017

Rank #15

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008 – Jeff Wilson of Textile Exchange and Daren Abney of Better Cotton Initiative – Better Cotton, Better World

Cotton, textiles, and sustainability… Jeff Wilson (Director of Business Value Strategy & Development for Textile Exchange, a global nonprofit organization that works to make the textile industry more sustainable – bio) and Daren Abney (Membership Engagement Manager of Better Cotton Initiative, a not-for-profit organization stewarding the global standards for better cotton – bio) join Stephanie Benedetto, Samanta Cortes and guest host Marc Raco on location at TexWorld USA 2017. Sustainability vs. business needs, the need for a metric, and adopting standards Abney reviews being a proponent of making cotton production better for the environment and better for the cotton sector future, how BCI has transformed 11.9% of the global market as licensed Better Cotton, out of the goal of 30% by 2020. A Better Cotton standard system, a holistic approach to sustainability with emphasis on business, and a funding mechanism that funds field projects worldwide. Wilson talks about creating overall public good on standards, textiles, and supply chain including certification. How BCI, headquarted in Geneva Switzerland, is a member of Textile Exchange, which is also a member of BCI. Common goals of sustainability, commonality of vision and results, helping membership (brands) understand environmental impacts of primary materials, and how preferred materials would change that impact. Looking at ways established brands are approached vs. smaller brands. BCI’s continuous improvement and metric for change at the agricultural crop level, and considering that the Top 10 commodities impacting WWF include cotton. A look at Textile Exchange developing standards associated with given fibers or materials, what constitutes a certifiable material, wool as largely an animal rights standard, and a new way to be thinking about sustainability. A global collective, designers, and life cycle assessment Common problems across the industry, common conversations about the “dirty industry”, 4,000+ chemicals effluent, toxic into watersheds, human health problems, chemical issues with synthetics production and farm production, and a broad industry commonality which drives a lot of work in collective efforts. Why problems can’t be solved even by one single massive brand, requiring a global collective effort to transform an industry into a new model including environmental and social impacts. Creating awareness inside an industry, and how a vast number of buyers and designers are only now becoming aware of environmental and social issues. The importance of having something measurable that can meet market, and fundamental changes requiring a specific plan. The life cycle assessment (LCA) on products, such as jeans, and how fashion is largest in pollution. Water, The Higg Index, and surfing Businesses can protect business while addressing environmental issues such as water. 85% of global post-consumer textiles end up in a landfill. Getting more involved and reporting to members on a circular economy that’s gaining speed. No need to demonize consumption and fast fashion because there are more conversations to happen. The Higg Index, the need for more growth and execution at the designer level, and why design schools need to adopt more curriculum around these topics. Impacting lives, surfing and spirituality, yoga pants, board shorts, and the High Line. References: Zara H and M The North FaceSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


19 Apr 2017

Rank #16

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032 – Stacy Flynn – Shapeshifting Materials with Three Beakers and a Dream

Transforming textile waste into pristine new fiber at a molecular level… Stacy Flynn, CEO/Co-founder of EVRNU (fiber technology transforms textile waste into pristine new fiber. Evrnu has invented the only regenerative fiber made from post-consumer textile waste) joins “Fashion Is Your Business” hosts Pavan Bahl, Rob Sanchez, and Marc Raco at the 2017 WEAR Conference in San Francisco. Powered by Sennheiser. (Flynn’s profile) A wake up call, impacting the system’s lynch pin, and a prototype Flynn shares how working in a cloud of pollution gave her a wake up call, realizing a generation of kids who don’t see blue sky, realizing she was linked to the cause of the problem, and how 90% of all clothing is made from clothing or polyester, and we throw away 14 million tons of clothing waste a year in the US alone. She discusses the goal of taking waste and turning it into high quality fiber, impacting the lynch pin of the system, and how the surprising result turned out versatile and beautiful The vision of intervention with minimal disruption, how the first prototype took a t-shirt from solid to liquid to a solid, and the journey of how Target signed on as an early adopter. The holy grail of transformation, early adopters, and micro-manufacturing models Separating cotton and polyester on a molecunetorking lar level, how the holy grail is taking a blended garment, liquefying it, separating it then using the individual components, and new processes vs. repurposing existing processes. How the process is actually shapeshifting material, realigning molecules, and the process of pushing through spinnerette determines the final qualities. Samples, licensing, early adopters Levis, Target and seven more not public, and how marketing campaigns need proof now. The difficult truth that a colored t-shirt requires 700 gallons of water to make, helping brands with sell-through rates and sustainability, and why the ability to network helps now, looking at micro-manufacturing models, with small manufacturers linked together to become power manufacturing chains as a localized, globalized model. Reciprocity, the human spirit, and the Redwoods Finding ways to build business, saving the environment while honoring designs. The three part adopter program, and how reciprocity creates human solidarity. There is no algorithm on the power of the human spirit to solve a really big problem. And Off the Grid Questions covers the Redwoods, a heavy moment, and accidental eyebrow shaving. Hear more MouthMedia Network shows at www.MouthMediaNetwork.com.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


15 Nov 2017

Rank #17

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024 – David Sasso of Buhler Quality Yarns – Farm to Shelf

Sustainable manufacturing of fine count yarns with Buhler Quality Yarns… David Sasso, VP of International Sales for Buhler Quality Yarns (manufacturer and supplier of fine-count yarns, with over 200 years of experience producing yarns, and dedicated to the highest standards, unparalleled service and sustainable manufacturing – (bio)) joins Samanta Cortes, Stephanie Benedetto, and Rob Sanchez on location at TexWorld USA in New York. Centuries of experience, a partnership, and quality over price Sasso discusses Supima, a premiere spinner for micromodal and tencel products from wood fibers, how the industry lost focus, what cellulose means to comfort and breathability, how the Buhler name goes back over 200 years, a premiere spinner of premium fibers in Europe, was core product and yarn, and having been in high demand for luxury products on global basis. A partnership putting together strategies going forward, global vs. regional strategies, market changes, how Buhler knows about manufacturing of yarns, fabrics and apparel, and looking at the whole supply chain and fine tune it to be competitive. Quality is important and education as well, not problems when not maximizing consumer experience. Educating partners, technical qualities, and sustainability How if one saves pennies it can sacrifice dollars when the customer is not happy. Educating partners to know how a supply chain can be put together to meet price points and manufacturing goals. And speed vs. price point vs. communication vs. transportation. Breathability requires cellular features, the difference in naturally occurring vs. synthetics fibers, how everyone wants to jump to design stage without considering technical qualities of fibers, from structure to shape, and implications on performance, absorption, and having lost that knowhow. While value is the game changer, what sustainability means to Buhler, the worst sustainable product is one that doesn’t last, and didn’t accomplish much at a consumer level.   Fiber properties must be there or a fabric will be inferior. If a fiber is weak it must be blended with a stronger fiber for example. Marketing, military innovations, and Panama The marketing strategy going forward because of marriage with Samil Spinning Co. Is regeneration of fibers in the future for Buhler? So many things happening in the US market from temperature sensing, resisting moisture, and more. Military innovations at university levels, asking industry to look at it, the need to consolidate, and the need for less manufacturing. Personal questions with a round of Remnants covers dinner with politicians who influence the world and distribute wealth, steak, being driven by family, and coming from Panama into pursuing the American dream.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


31 Aug 2017

Rank #18

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027 – Sharon Graubard of MintModa – Mapping the Thread

Fashion trend forecasting… Sharon Graubard, Founder and Creative Director of MintModa (trend forecasting which enables trend-right product for all fashion and design-related industries – (profile)), joins Stephanie Benedetto and Samanta Cortes in the MouthMedia network studios powered by Sennheiser. What MintModa looks for, looking for the thread, and trends as a mirror Graubard shares how as a fashion forecaster she analyzes what’s going on — on the street and in culture — and meaningful narratives about fashion, along with some direction. How analysis happens, how the seeds of what’s coming are here and now, and focuses also on home interiors, beauty and design related industries. What she and her team look for, how you can kind of feel it, what’s coming next. Why you still have to travel to see trends, to feel and smell it. Seeing the world on your phone is not ideal, digesting info, how you can’t be everywhere and assess everything, how does info come in, what might be not so much a trend, more like assessing street tribes of fashion, looking for the thread not just low hanging fruit, new contexts, a strange mix bubbling up that becomes newness. Maps with arrows, like a psychological map behind the trend. Designers thinking they are their own trend forecasters, who the Internet affects. Now the consumer tells the industry what’s happening next. Need to see what designers think, along with what people are wearing. A self fulfilling-prophecy vs. a trend being organic? A trend has to be like a mirror. Report vs. service, fashion as a democratic art, and fabric’s important role Must be open/inclusive, but specific and focused. Is it a report or service? (More analytical and creative than a report). Zones! The textile, the fabric is where the creativity is, and why Graubard is so passionate about materials. Performance is an invisible quality, but adds real value. And customers are looking for value. And a prediction of where fashion industry trends are going. How MintModa helps with verbage for websites, naming of products, and having a very full, diverse, interesting team, having different eyes, different voices, different points of view. Fashion is the most democratic art — everyone wakes up and gets dressed. Things move just as fast as they always have. Fabric is the thing that has technology. The way we build clothes is pretty much the way we always have. A first job in fashion, craft and artisanal, and Paris How MintModa allows user to go deeper and do their own research and want to spur more research on the site. A trend might not be trending, but a client might like a look. How Graubard never studied fashion, always loved it, and never had heard of a fashion forecaster. The only jobs in fashion were as a textile colorist, painting prints, and how she put a fashion portfolio together and got work. Her first job at The Tobin Report from a newspaper ad in Help Wanted section. How far out we need to look in forecast, the most important value in the millennial, and how craft and artisanal are still important. And personal questions in a round of Remnants cover the heritage of Paris, how all roads lead to one look, being wide open to fashion possibilities, and your own sincere, authentic feeling about something.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


21 Sep 2017

Rank #19

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025 – Andrew Dent of Material ConneXion – Staying in Touch with Materials

Innovative, advanced, and sustainable materials library… Andrew Dent, Executive Vice President, Research for Material ConneXion (the world’s largest library of innovative, advanced, and sustainable materials – (profile)) – joins Stephanie Benedetto, Samanta Cortes, and Rob Sanchez at the MouthMedia Network Studios powered by Sennheiser. Materials across industries, the magic of physical samples, and four tenents Dent describes how Material ConneXion show clients who make anything them how to make better products ranging from beds, to clothing, flooring, appliances, vehicles, furniture, exploring new and interesting materials, providing both digital and in-person searches, but how there is no substitution for physical samples. The way it sparks innovation and inspiration, the ability to touch and feel materials across various markets. Four tenents for innovation to get into the library, artificial spider silk, and making fabrics out of milk. Spider silk, composites, and sustainability How Adidas came out with product with synthetic spider silk that was completely biodegradable in a few hours with a special enzyme, how North Face created a Moon Parka and Bolt Threads has a tie from spider silk, and what makes sustainable product work when needed and disappear when not. How products from natural resources can break down, and making sure a product at the end of life is timed for being at end of usefulness. Where Material ConneXion is going in the future, how the composites world is changing quietly and seeing more automation that allows use in more applications, seeing shifts and cycles, how many foods make good plastics, dealing with abundance of foods and oversupply into sustainability arguments, and making sure that doesn’t take away from natural resources. Creating new products, printed and embedded electronics, and Milan The way women apply cosmetics in South Korea is different, how every material has a solution, a case that had difficulty but had an exciting solution, new ways of designing and doing things by new ways of looking at materials, even transforming products into new things such as embedded robotics and digital circuitry, printed electronics, and challenges that they bring, and considerations of the after life of products and materials. And a round of Remnants personal questions covers great grounding in the physical world, loving and being taken up by Milan, the Milan Furniture Fair, new experiences, an unlimited palette, when artists and scientists get together, and hope.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.


9 Sep 2017

Rank #20