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Cotton gets new colors, patterns and cuts

Innovation is infiltrating cotton design. Once seen as a casual classic, cotton is a staple material that is now taking on a new life in high fashion. Cotton has evolved from tried-and-true classic staples like T-shirts and denim jeans. The cotton garments now seen on runways range from silky-smooth coral crochet dresses, ethereal peach gowns studded with futuristic 3D flowers and black-and-white poplin turned into avant-garde jumpsuits. It’s this innovation in design that is transforming cotton in inspiring ways.

Cotton is a fiber that everybody wants to wear, so everybody’s working to make it useful in many different ways beyond T-shirts and jeans. At a recent show, designers used US cotton in such unexpected ways that the garments displayed were actually mistaken for silk, suede and synthetic fibers. Designers dyed cotton in the sun, scalloped it, shredded it and turned it into velvet, while one particular designer even interlocked cotton fabric without traditional sewing so that the garment could be taken apart and the pieces could be reconstructed into a whole new style.

Cotton is an effortless fabric made from a natural fiber that was grown from a plant, that’s able to morph into a garment that has the performance capabilities of synthetic fibers, or the artistic elements of haute couture.