In a world with self-driving cars and space travel, how was it that industries like apparel were being left in the dark ages? Katherine Homuth, founder and CEO of SRTX, recognized an opportunity to change textiles and propel them into the modern age.Play Video
Why textiles? Having not undergone transformational change in decades, the fast fashion industry is one of the largest contributors to climate change and global waste production. Approaching the problem product-first, SRTX set out to engineer a material innovation that, if brought to apparel manufacturing, would not only benefit consumers but pave the way for sustainable apparel.
After an exhaustive search for innovations that could be introduced into consumer apparel, Katherine found a polymer which was traditionally reserved for high performance applications (like bulletproof vests and climbing equipment) that had yet to be brought to consumer apparel. She believed this polymer had the potential to fundamentally change textiles by increasing durability and longevity. It was clear which product would be the first to incorporate this polymer: tights are the ‘plastic water bottle’ of the apparel industry, and consumers expect it to have the shortest lifespan of any apparel product. If ever there was a product that could benefit from increased durability, it was sheer hosiery.
Before SRTX launched in 2017, pantyhose had not seen significant change since the invention of Spandex in the 1950s. There was no material both fine enough and strong enough to hold up beyond a single day’s wear. After two years of R&D, the establishment of in-house manufacturing, miniaturization of fibers, and patenting of a knit that could achieve stretch without sacrificing strength, the first units of Sheertex® tights shipped in February of 2019.
500k units later, SRTX has effectively commercialized its technology and created competitive market demand, significantly disrupting the textile industry with its innovative drive. Our technology has even caught the attention of others in the apparel industry, and we’ve begun producing tights for other brands. Today, all manufacturing is done sustainably in-house at our factory and headquarters in Montreal, and is proudly the largest knitting operation in Canada.