Unifi has linked arms with Oak Hall Cap & Gown to clothe more than 300,000 college students in eco-friendly regalia this spring. Composed entirely of Unifi’s “Repreve” material, each “GreenWeaver” gown contains the equivalent of 27 recycled plastic bottles. Over 1,100 colleges and universities, including Columbia University, Louisiana State University, and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will be flaunting the garment in the upcoming months, diverting an estimated 8 million plastic bottles from landfills this graduation season alone, according to the companies.
So far, at least 2.2 million students have donned the GreenWeaver gown, which Unifi describes as “soft to the touch, wrinkle-resistant, and lightweight. The gown isn’t the end of the recycling story, either. Oak Hall will accept any unwanted gowns for turning into new Repreve yarn.
“We are excited to be a part of the commitment these universities have made to sustainability, and helping set an example for students and schools everywhere that recycling is something of extreme importance,” says Joseph D’Angelo, president of Oak Hall, in a statement. “Working with Repreve to create GreenWeaver gowns made from plastic bottles here in the United States has helped us change the way academic regalia are made and worn, and we’re proud that we have kept nearly 60 million plastic bottles out of the landfill through this program.”