Sustainability is an inherent practice in the clothing business — at least for co-founders of Appalatch Outdoor Apparel Co. Grace Gouin and Mariano deGuzman. In an effort to revolutionize the clothing industry, reduce textile waste, and promote a unique for-profit business model with non-profit ideals, Grace and Mariano recently launched a Kickstarter campaign for a knitting machine that works as a 3D printer and creates precise patterns and dimensions of a sweater without wasting a single iota of thread. We talked to the two clothiers about their Kickstarter campaign (they've currently received from donors about 60 percent of their goal of $50,000), cutting down on textile waste, a sheep-shearing Quaker named John, and creating long-enduring clothing for the "modern-day Indiana Jones."
So, can you talk a little about this futuristic 3D-sweater-making-machine?
GRACE: We're moving towards something called a Stoll knitting machine. In a way it's a 3D printer for sweaters, but it's not the traditional 3D printer that prints out the plastic kind of stuff. You can design any kind of sweater you want with this computer program and then the Stoll takes your yarn and knits it in the exact dimensions of what it is you're trying to make.