RPL celebrates strategic partner Coloreel's tie up with retail clothing giant

RPL celebrates strategic partner Coloreel's tie up with retail clothing giant

H&M with Coloreel

Ricoh UK Products Ltd (RPL) is pleased to learn that its strategic partner Coloreel has teamed up with retail clothing giant H&M to bring its technology to stores.

The Swedish company Coloreel has rapidly gained recognition for its pioneering innovation in embroidery. Their technology – ‘a world first’ – enables manufacturers to instantly dye a white thread into an unlimited spectrum of colours, all in real-time.

Furthermore, this technology makes production more efficient by using digital processes and automation, while saving up to 97% of water compared to traditional thread dyeing. Find out more by clicking here.

In October it was announced that H&Mbeyond launched an embroidery service in the newly re-opened Alexa H&M store in Berlin.

H&Mbeyond is the Central European Innovation Hub of the well-known fashion company H&M Group. Together with startups and innovators, its team drives forward future-oriented projects, products and services.

Oliver Lange, Head of H&Mbeyond, said he was excited by the partnership.

He said: "Our partnership with Coloreel reflects our commitment to enhance the shopping experience through innovative solutions.

"By embracing this advanced technology, we can offer our customers a unique and engaging store visit."

With the collaboration, H&M and Coloreel want to explore ways to create exciting brick-and-mortar shopping experiences and analyze the influence that a disruptive technology like Coloreel’s has on in-store purchases.

Meanwhile, Mattias Nordin, SVP Product Management at Coloreel, added: "We are proud to team up with H&M to bring forth a new era of personalized fashion.

"Together, we are redefining the boundaries of traditional embroidery, empowering customers to express their individuality”.

The service is offered at the H&M Alexa store in Berlin during Q4 2023. While the service currently extends to products within the store, plans for embroidering customers’ own garments might be added later. This approach would extend the lifespan of garments, creating a positive environmental impact.

RICOH first connected with Coloreel in January 2017, where they explained that their concept was to digitally colour a thread using inkjet technology on stitch-by-stitch basis.

A partnership was formed shortly after with the aim of creating a custom-designed and manufactured print module, which today, is the core printing technology within the Coloreel ITCu (Integrated Thread Colouring Unit), co-developed by RPL and Ricoh Company Ltd. RICOH also supplies ink cartridges and other consumables to support the Coloreel product.

The unit enables the embroidery designer huge scope to create unique embroideries with thousands of different colours across multiple colour spaces. The designer can also incorporate special effects which are unique to Coloreel, such as vivid multipoint gradients, noise and stripes which are not feasible with conventional embroidery.

Producing coloured thread on-demand also enables complete freedom to create virtually any design imaginable onto any textile-based products such as caps, shoes, shirts, jackets, bags and more. 

Said RPL’s Engineering Specialist, Simon Frost: “The RPL team is proud to work with Coloreel on this innovative product development journey.

“This close collaboration has resulted in a ‘world first’ in terms of product development. The Coloreel ITCu is a truly innovative product offering clear benefits in terms of creativity, efficiency, performance and sustainability.

“It is truly awe-inspiring to see the amazing designs which are being created by using this cutting-edge technology.”

This news follows on from Coloreel's recent announcement of a million-dollar deal with a major Asian manufacturer.

This new partnership underscores Coloreel's capacity to meet the growing demand for innovative and sustainable solutions among manufacturers and brands worldwide.

While the initial delivery of the on-demand digital thread-dying units is set for October 2023, the majority of the volume will be shipped during 2024.

A spokesperson at Coloreel said: “We are extremely proud to team up with H&Mbeyond to bring forth a new era of personalised fashion. Together, we are redefining the boundaries of in-store embroidery, empowering customers to express their individuality.”

Torbjörn Bäck, CEO of Coloreel, added: “We are thrilled about this partnership and eagerly anticipate collaborating to produce high-quality products utilising our patented technology.

“This agreement serves as evidence that our offering can play a crucial role in making mass production in the fashion industry more sustainable, while also providing tremendous opportunities for design and creativity.”

Together, RPL and Coloreel are both preserving the craftmanship of embroidery and taking embroidery to the next level. And with Coloreel expanding their partnerships in other sectors, this latest announcement undoubtedly strengthens the movement towards more sustainable production in textiles, fashion and beyond.

Congratulations to Coloreel and H&Mbeyond; RICOH looks forward to seeing what’s to come…