A German fashion designer has found an interesting use for milk…as dresses.
Anke Domaske, 28, has developed a fabric called QMilch made from high concentrations of the milk protein casein – the first man-made fibre produced entirely without chemicals, Reuters reports.
"It feels like silk and it doesn’t smell – you can wash it just like anything else," Domaske told Reuters.
QMilch is made from all natural materials, and Domaske, a former microbiology student, said the material is ecological and also has many health benefits.
She said the amino acids in the protein are antibacterial, anti-ageing and can help regulate both blood circulation and body temperature.
Domaske’s fashion label Mademoiselle Chi Chi, which ahs been worn by celebrities Ashlee Simpson and Mischa Barton, a has started weaving the milk fibre into its collection.
Currently the QMilch is used in addition to other fabrics in dresses, but Domaske said she plans to create a collection using just the milk fabric.
"We have developed an all-natural fibre consisting of a very high concentration of casein, with a few other natural ingredients – and in only two years," Domaske said.
The casein is extracted from dried milk powder and then heated up in a type of meat-mincing machine with other natural ingredients, she explained.
The fibre comes out in strands and is then spun into yarn on a spinning machine.
Domaske said one dress would require about six litres of milk and would retail for between €150 €200.
And for those worried about the dresses expiring, Domaske explained the heating process of the molecules make it bind in a way that mean the protein won’t decompose.
Perhaps Australian dairy farmers could turn their focus away from the supermarkets and towards the fashion industry?
Earlier today the peak body for the Australian dairy industry said local operations won’t survive the supermarket price wars.