Israel’s Water-Free Revolution For Dyeing Industry

The startup sprays paint onto the yarn, saving millions of wasted gallons

Fashion is one of the most polluting industries in the world. Yarn dyeing for clothing alone accounts for over a fifth of global water pollution.

But an Israeli company has developed the world’s first completely water-free dyeing system.

It uses a method closer to printing than traditional dyeing. Based in Petach Tikva, central Israel, Twine Solutions precisely sprays yarn with a dye specially formulated to penetrate each fiber, rather than using traditional methods that require large amounts of water and chemicals.

A closeup of multiple dyes on polyester yarn. decency

His machine produces the yarn samples apparel designers need for color proofing in minutes—a fast and effective alternative to having a dyer turn up the entire resource-intensive process for a short run.

Eventually, Twine Solutions hopes to expand its machinery to handle large orders. But rumor has it the textile industry is very traditional and many of its processes – including yarn dyeing – haven’t changed in decades.

Dyed yarn suppliers say customers will resist any move that could add even a penny to the cost of a finished garment.

“Our machine is a cost-effective solution because companies can create prototypes and samples much faster than their competition,” Adi Mandel, senior marketing manager at Twine, told NoCamels.

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“They can be more agile, they can adapt much more quickly, and they can attract clients that they might have missed because they normally wouldn’t have been the right color.

Twine uses its own dye to dye polyester yarn and has thousands of options to choose from. decency

“When a manufacturer needs to produce a sample or prototype very quickly, it helps the brand to be first and it helps brands get their product to stores faster because they saved a lot of time and money during this process . ”

A remarkable back and forth is necessary before a newly designed garment actually goes into production. Designers create swatches—a piece of fabric with their chosen design and color—and send it to their manufacturer.

They, in turn, send the samples to a dye works to produce their three best matches using traditional water and chemical methods. If designers and manufacturers are happy, that’s fine. If not, the dye shop has to try again.

The samples then travel around the world to be approved by sales teams in different countries and regions, which means another batch of samples needs to be prepared.

Twine’s machine can dye nearly 6,000 feet (1,800 meters) of polyester yarn per hour. All the user has to do is load raw or white yarn and select the desired color and length on its touch screen and it will do the rest.

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The Twine Solutions system dyes polyester yarn digitally and water-free. decency

“You save so much time and so much waste, so much hassle and air emissions because these planes fly back and forth. The process is so much easier,” says Mandel.

“Ordering more yarn and thread, testing, finding out it’s not right, buying again – all of this creates huge mountains of waste in the industry.

“The best thing that can be done is for the manufacturer or brand to send them a spool of thread that’s been dyed with Twine and they can customize it,” she says. “Brands can avoid a lot of waste and waste water.”

The waste water from the dyeing process is used to irrigate fields in China, Thailand, Bangladesh, Indonesia and other countries that dominate the dyeing market.

It pollutes rivers and seas and is incredibly dangerous to humans. Last January, six workers at an Indian dye works were killed and over 20 were hospitalized after inhaling toxic gases caused by an illegal dump of waste chemicals.

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A cloth mask made with Twine’s dyed threads. decency

Twine is the world’s first digital and water-free yarn dyeing system, although some competition has emerged in recent years.

Coloreel, a Swedish company, has developed a device that connects to embroidery machines and also digitizes the dyeing process – but producers can only use the company’s special thread.

Twine’s digital yarn dyeing system can also be used in sports. decency

Alchemy Technology in England also uses a digital dyeing process for polyester fabric, but it is not completely anhydrous.

Twine Solutions was founded in 2015 and presented its machine, the TS-1800, at a trade fair in Barcelona in 2019.

Since then it has been implemented in development centers, R&D centers and near production lines around the world, in Asia, Europe and the USA.

Israeli textile company Delta Galil used the Twine machine to create a one-off collection of Nike socks. “They created a gradient effect so each pair was unique. The label mentioned how unique and sustainable the sock is,” says Mandel.

The company also works with Coats, the world’s leading manufacturer of industrial threads, to produce a specific thread color without any pattern or pattern.

It’s a collaboration that could be the first step in expanding its machine park to handle bulk rather than sample orders.

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