Even wooler? If you’re a creative, environment-loving 18- to 35-year old interested or experienced in 1) fashion design, 2) product design or 3) videomaking; you can participate in the “Made in Cardato” contest and win both.

Cardato Regenerated Wool Prato Italy
Recycled knitwear to be made into Cardato wool -Photo: © Marco Badiani

The worldwide competition, now in its second year, is seeking new uses and communication strategies for Cardato Regenerated CO2 Neutral brand wool.  Applying is quite simple, requiring only concepts and not finished work. Fashion and product designers are asked to send in digital images or sketches and a description for their proposed Cardato commodity. While videomaker applicants have it even easier, requiring just a 20-line Cardato promotional video synopsis and examples of previously shot projects.

*The “Made in Cardato” contest deadline has just been extended to October 31, 2012!*

Cardato Wool Prato Italy
A box of spun Cardato yarn -Photo: © Marco Badiani

Nine lucky finalists (three from each of the categories above) will be flown to Prato, Italy  to develop their prototypes and film their footage. As guests of the Prato Chamber of Commerce, they’ll get to watch the Cardato wool process from behind the scenes; network with fashion houses and producers; participate in workshops around town; and, considering Prato is just a half an hour from the city of Florence, see some of Italy’s greatest sights.

Their final creations will be judged by a panel of industry experts, and one winner in each category will take home €2,500. Yes, three people win! And the odds of being one of them are actually pretty high, considering you’ll be up against about 250 other applicants (not thousands).

The best part of all of this? Cardato Regenerated CONeutral brand wool really is a wonderful product. 

“Cardato” is Italian for “carded,” referring to the process of spinning wool from a mix of virgin and reused fibers. Cardato brand wool is composed of at least 70% broken down “rags,” old clothing and cuttings of new fabrics used in the garment industry. This means that every year, just in the city of Prato, twenty-two thousand tons of fabric are recycled during its production.

It’s also the world’s first certified ‘zero emissions’ textile. 

Sorting “rags” by color, to be washed and broken down into reusable fiber for Cardato Wool -Photo: © Marco Badiani

This is where the “CONeutral” part of the Cardato name comes in. Textile production produces carbon dioxide, polluting the earth’s atmosphere. To offset and compensate for its harmful emissions, Cardato purchases “carbon credits.” These cover the costs of eco-friendly programs like tree and forest replantation, which absorb COand neutralize the brand’s overall chemical output.

Italian travel, money, and saving the Earth? Are you convinced to apply to the “Made in Cardato” contest, yet? The deadline falls in one week, but coming up with rough ideas to use and promote such a loveable product shouldn’t be very hard. Just play it wool.

For more on Cardato wool and the “Made in Cardato” contest…

  1. Follow Cardato on Twitter
  2. Like the “Made in Cardato” contest on Facebook
  3. Browse the “Made in Cardato” 2011 contest winners’ projects
  4. Watch the explanatory Cardato video

-Whitney Richelle






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