Pacca Alpaca

Saudi Gazette
By: Saudi Gazette
Photo: Courtesy of Saudi Gazette
Original content from Saudi Gazette.

PACCA Alpaca, a prominent pre-school edutainment brand developed by a Saudi educator, is expanding its mission in Saudi Arabia.

Anamil Tech is a Riyadh- and London-based company founded by Sarah Faisal Al-Saud.

With a PhD in Human Computer Interaction and a mother of two pre-school children, Sarah’s passion for using technology to expand children’s learning led her to create two award-winning educational apps that follow the adventures of Pacca Alpaca, a colorful character that embodies the wonder and curiosity of a pre-school child.

The apps feature hours of interactive learning in seven languages with a focus on children’s character development, social skills, resilience and critical thinking – all in the context of exploring diverse cultures.

Encouraged by multiple awards, critical acclaim and popular demand from both parents and children, Anamil Tech launched the Pacca Alpaca YouTube channel that today features hundreds of videos and millions of dedicated viewers.

“I am amazed at the success of Pacca Alpaca,” said Sarah. “It tells me there is a need and demand for educational content that explores the world from a child’s unique point of view."

Read the rest of this story and view the photos at Saudi Gazette.    

People Are Making Huge Sweaters To Protect Elephants From The Cold

The Huffington Post
By: Hilary Hanson   
Photo: Courtesy of Wildlife SOS 

Photo Caption: An elephant clad in a snappy sweater at Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Center.

Remember when that awesome man knit a whole bunch of tiny sweaters for penguins recovering after an oil spill? This is sort of like that, but a lot … bigger.

Staff at the Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Center in the northern Indian city of Mathura have been working together to handmake extra-large sweaters for the pachyderms in their care, in light of this winter’s severely cold weather.

Making one of the gigantic sweaters takes four weeks, so only three elephants have them so far, Wildlife SOS co-founder Kartick Satyanarayan told The Dodo. In the meantime, the rest are making do with gigantic blankets.

The center cares for 20 elephants, rescued from wildlife traffickers, abusive circuses and other harmful circumstances. In some cases, elephants who have suffered cruelty are more vulnerable to the cold, Satyanarayan said in a statement.

“It is important to keep our elephants protected from the bitter cold during this extreme winter, as they are weak and vulnerable having suffered so much abuse making them susceptible to ailments such as pneumonia,” he said.

Satyanarayan added that many of the elephants also suffer from arthritis, which can be aggravated by the cold.

The weather at the center is “comparatively sunny during the daytime,” but the temperatures drop significantly at night, spokeswoman Arinita Sandilya told The Huffington Post in an email. That, in addition to the physical labor involved with caring for elephants, is why the people in the photos are wearing T-shirts.

Read the original and view the photos here.

Pomegranate waste shows promise for dyeing fabrics

Ecotextile News
By: Bret Mathews
Photo: Courtesy of Ecotextile News

TUNISIA – African researchers claim to have successfully dyed nylon fibres with pomegranate peel with good levels of dye exhaustion and dye durability.

The scientists performed experiments at lab-scale and used soxhlet extraction and methanol to extract pigments from the waste part of the fruit, which is often discarded.

The researchers then used high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) in order to demonstrate the presence of flavonoids such as luteolin, which dyed the fabrics with a yellow shade range.

Other phenolic compounds were also also identified such as caffeic acid, a yellow solid which consists of both phenolic and acrylic functional groups.

Read the original here.

Worn Again: From old knits to haute couture, a breakthrough in sustainable fashion

Creative Boom
By Katy Cowan
Photo: By Madien Cohen 

Apparently, around 17,000 tons of textiles are thrown away every year in Israel. In her haute couture series Worn Again, fashion designer Dana Cohen wants to showcase a new way to recycle these fabrics and transform them into sustainable, yet luxury clothing.

Nearing the end of her studies at the Shankar College of Engineering and Design, she spotted a pile of leftover textiles that she didn't end up using in her designs, and it got her thinking about the mass production of clothes and its impact. Inspired to do something different, she introduced an innovative new approach to ecological fabric manufacturing.

She explained: "Until now, used clothes were recycled mainly for practical purposes. I found a way to create a new cycle of life to used knits by shredding them and using them to create new textiles. I like the idea that the unique colour of the recycled textiles consists of many different knits, each with their own history. And meanwhile we can reduce pollution!"

The project has proved so popular it won the Fini Leitersdorf Excellence Award for Creativity and Originality in Fashion, and the Rozen Award for Design and Sustainable Technologies for 2015.

When it comes to inspiration for her designs, Dana creates textiles that have unique colour combinations and textures, often giving a spotty effect: "It made me think of Jackson Pollock’s drip painting technique. I decided that every outfit will be coloured according to a different painting."

For almost all outfits, Dana chose to show the transformation from old garment to new in one piece of clothing: "By knitting new pieces and integrating them in the new fabric, I could illustrate the transformation from old to new. For some of the outfits I used patterns as argyles and stripes that are usually associated with traditional sweaters."

Read the original and view the photo gallery here.