Fashion Designer Creates Biodegradable Clothes for the Dead
A Melbourne, Australia fashion designer named Pia Interlandi, has built a unique career - she designs clothes for the dead. Through her company, Garments for the Grave, she creates custom biodegradable burial garments for the deceased.
"In almost every human culture, when an individual is prepared for burial or cremation, their body is dressed in a garment that will literally and symbolically become part of the body as it returns to the earth."
Interlandi says people have different fashion needs in death. Things like tailoring, zippers and buttons aren't necessary. Her burial clothes are made up of fabrics like cotton, linen and hemp. They're designed to disintegrate with the body.
She researched which fabrics to use through the “Pig Project,” which was part of her PhD research at RMIT University. Interlandi dressed and buried 21 pig carcasses in various materials to see how each decomposed over the course of a year.
“In essence, the garment lasts just long enough for the body to be dressed and buried. It disintegrates at a rate that is slightly quicker than the body, so that the body is gradually unwrapped or undressed so that it can be released back into the environment."
Interlandi is hoping to launch an online store soon.