Singer, songwriter, and music producer Pharrell Williams has been in the public eye a lot lately, from dancing alongside scantily-clad women in Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” video to lighting up social media with chatter about the unusual hats he wore to the Grammys and the Academy Awards. But now, he’s making fashion news for a completely different reason: Williams is collaborating with clothing maker G-Star RAW and Bionic Yarn, (a company that makes yarn from recycled plastic), to make jeans from ocean debris.
In an interview with Brian Clark Howard of National Geographic, Williams said of his environmental collaboration, “I am not a fanatic or a hard-core activist. I’m not the guy with the picket sign or the guy who lays down on tracks, but I commend them for their conviction. I have a lot to be thankful for, all of the cool things that have happened in my life. We have to give back in some shape and form and that’s giving back to the Earth. I’ve been lucky enough to be given this collaboration and my message to people is you don’t have to do anything. But if you don’t want to let it go, then what Bionic is doing with the oceans is right for you.”
Bionic Yarn works with marine debris organizations to acquire plastic bottles made of polyethylene terephthalate (or PET) collected from coastlines. If the plastic has broken down after bobbing in the ocean for a long time, they blend it with land-based recycled bottles to ensure the material for their fabric is consistent.
The collection will be available at G-Star Raw stores and online starting August 15. By then, there will probably be a new Pharrell Williams hit saturating the airwaves, reminding everyone to check out these ocean-cleaning threads.