News Business & Policy Arvin Goods Is Turning Old Apparel Scraps Into Cool, Comfy Socks This company is on a mission to make the cleanest basics on the planet. By Katherine Martinko Katherine Martinko Twitter Senior Editor University of Toronto Katherine Martinko is an expert in sustainable living. She holds a degree in English Literature and History from the University of Toronto. Learn about our editorial process Updated June 30, 2021 02:19PM EDT Fact checked by Haley Mast Fact checked by Haley Mast LinkedIn Harvard University Extension School Haley Mast is a freelance writer, fact-checker, and small organic farmer in the Columbia River Gorge. She enjoys gardening, reporting on environmental topics, and spending her time outside snowboarding or foraging. Topics of expertise and interest include agriculture, conservation, ecology, and climate science. Learn about our fact checking process Arvin Goods Share Twitter Pinterest Email News Environment Business & Policy Science Animals Home & Design Current Events Treehugger Voices News Archive Arvin Goods is a company from Seattle that turns discarded apparel scraps into cute, comfortable socks. Its unusual (and very cool) production process means the socks are made from 100% recycled materials (cotton and polyester) and thus require almost no new water. The scraps come either from the cutting floor or from old clothes that are then broken down into recycled base yarn. This approach stands out for a couple of reasons—first, because a conventional pair of socks requires 50+ gallons of water to make, and second because 85% of apparel waste ends up in landfills. Aware of these facts, Arvin says it "holds itself accountable to these responsibilities," and therefore has made it a "big, long-term goal to clean up the apparel industry." Because Arvin sees itself as continually innovating and experimenting with newer and better ways of manufacturing, it has several interesting side collections. The Plant Dyed Collection features socks made from new organic cotton blended with a modal that uses a process called IndiDye. This is a non-toxic, plant-based, and less resource-intensive solution to the standard dyeing practices used in the apparel industry. Socks from the Plant Dyed Collection. Jordan Nicholson As explained to Treehugger, "IndiDye uses a unique ultrasonic pressure process to infuse plant-based dyes at the fiber level during production. The result is a huge range of vibrant, expressive colors—no chemicals required. The IndiDye process also requires much shorter dyeing times and temperatures, which drastically lowers energy and CO2 emissions required to get the job done." Most of Arvin's socks are made in Shanghai, China, in a unionized factory that is certified by GOTS and OEKO-TEX standards, but it has an additional collection that's made in Japan. A company spokesperson told Treehugger this was created as a way to prove that they could "take their materials and apply them directly to an elevated product at a competitive price point." These socks are made from reclaimed cotton in a 100-year-old family-owned factory on Awaji Island. "Arvin Goods' co-founder, Dustin Winegardner visited the factory and fell in love with their skilled craftsmanship [and a] family-oriented, beautiful environment that provides fair wages for employees. With this collection, Arvin Goods shows how you can make premium basics, with minimal resources for materials." A new Made in Japan collection will be launching in September. Socks from the Made in Japan collection. Arvin Goods This company means business when it comes to reducing its impact—and that's enormously refreshing to hear. From the website: "There’s a 'sustainability' myth out there that once you’ve made a responsible product, the job is done. Truth is, that’s total bullsh*t. That’s why we’re working to build infrastructure for apparel retrieval and downcycling. Because where Arvin (and any apparel) ends up is just as (if not more) important than how it’s made." Arvin Goods has succeeded at making functional and attractive socks that are competitively priced while offering a far smaller environmental footprint. That is just the beginning. As part of its longer-term goal of making the cleanest basics on the planet, you can expect to hear about shirts, sweats, and hats eventually, all adhering to the same high production standards. Check out the socks here.