New Printing Technology Controls the Catwalk at Kornit's LA Fashion Week

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is a reporter at dot.LA. Prior to that, she was an editorial fellow at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

Kornit Fashion week LA

Photo by Decerry Donato

The scene at ExchangeLA looked like a typical fashion show. Models sashayed across the stage in vibrant and flowy garments on Wednesday. A crowd cheered and snapped photos on their phones.

But the Kornit Fashion Week event wasn't a typical fashion show: Every article of clothing on display was created using digital printing technology.

The show was part of a week-long eco-minded event hosted in L.A's fashion district by Kornit Digital, an Israel-based global digital printing company. More of a mash-up than traditional fashion weeks, Kornit featured catwalks alongside panel discussions, presentations by industry experts and live demos of sustainability tech.

"Sustainability is the key factor that we are driving. As you all know, this industry is the second most polluting industry," said Kornit CEO Ronen Samuel. "Leveraging Kornit technology, you can do it fully sustainable, fully green without any waste of water."

The fashion world has long been scrutinized for its wasteful practices. The sector accounts for around 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to a United Nations analysis, and the rise of fast fashion has only exacerbated the problem.

That's not to say the industry isn't working to reduce the environmental footprint of its products: Kornit, for example, prints on garments using their patented NeoPigment inks, certified and free of heavy metals, formaldehyde, and Alkylphenol Ethoxylates (APE), making them non-hazardous, non-toxic, and eco-friendly; and brands like H&M are moving away from their fast fashion roots with their "conscious" collection, using materials like organic cotton and recycled polyester. But critics say that change isn't happening fast enough.

"Everyone has to be on the table for this to work out as an ecosystem," said Marci Zaroff, CEO of ECOfashion during the conference. "Sustainability must be embedded into our supply chains, our products and our brands."

The question, according to USC environmental engineering professor David Gerber, is whether Kornit's technologies can have a noticeable impact on overall emissions levels.

There are three factors to weigh when considering carbon output, Gerber said: direct emissions, indirect emissions from electricity purchased and used, and indirect emissions not controlled by the company (such as shipping routes).

While many companies can control for direct emissions and indirect emissions from electricity, it's that third category—emissions not controlled by the company—that presents a real challenge.

Photo by Decerry Donato

"Understanding of stage three is really a challenge because you have to know where every single molecule of material or energy came from," Gerber said. "You might be using sustainable cotton, then you might be using the most sustainable inks, and you might be using the most sustainable machine which has no waste. But as soon as you start moving those T-shirts around, are you using the most sustainable supply chain?"

Still, the folks at Kornit would say that their tech is at least a step in the right direction.

After the fashion show concluded, Kornit offered a tour through the City of Industry-based facility—owned by green-minded production manufacturing company DenimFWD—where it houses its products. The focus was on its two crown jewels: the Presto MAX printer, built to handle rolls of fabric; and the Atlas MAX, which prints up to 150 shirts per hour. Both are designed to eliminate redundancies, wasted time and excess labor.

The printers provide Kornit with the firepower to produce quickly, and reduce the risk of having excess inventory that can contribute to waste—an important feat, given that the Environmental Protection Agency estimates Americans generate 16 million tons of textile waste each year.

"From the beginning, [sustainability] is designed into the process," said Carlos Arias, CEO of DenimFWD. "Everything we're doing is supported by state of the art technology that achieves that."

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.


Los Angeles’ Wage Growth Outpaced Inflation. Here’s What That Means for Tech Jobs

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

Los Angeles’ Wage Growth Outpaced Inflation. Here’s What That Means for Tech Jobs

Inflation hit cities with tech-heavy workforces hard last year. Tech workers fortunate enough to avoid layoffs still found themselves confronting rising costs with little change in their pay.

Those national trends certainly touched down in Los Angeles, but new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that the city of angels was the only major metro area that saw its wage growth grow by nearly 6% while also outpacing the consumer price index, which was around 5%. Basically, LA was the only area where adjusted pay actually came out on a net positive.

So, what does this mean for tech workers in LA County?

Read moreShow less

Energy Shares Wants to Offer You a Chance to Invest in Green Energy Startups

David Shultz

David Shultz reports on clean technology and electric vehicles, among other industries, for dot.LA. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside, Nautilus and many other publications.

Energy Shares Wants to Offer You a Chance to Invest in Green Energy Startups
Photo by Red Zeppelin on Unsplash

The Inflation Reduction Act contains almost $400 billion in funding for clean energy initiatives. There’s $250 billion for energy projects. $23 billion for transportation and EVs. $46 billion for environment. $21 billion for agriculture, and so on. With so much cash flowing into the sector, the possibilities for investment and growth are gigantic.

These investment opportunities, however, have typically been inaccessible for everyday retail investors until much later in a company’s development–after an IPO, usually. Meaning that the best returns are likely to be captured by banks and other institutions who have the capital and financing to invest large sums of money earlier in the process.

That’s where Pasadena-based Energy Shares comes in. The company wants to help democratize access to these investment opportunities and simultaneously give early-stage utility-scale energy projects another revenue stream.

Read moreShow less

How These Ukranian Entrepreneurs Relocated Their Startups to LA and Found Success

Aisha Counts
Aisha Counts is a business reporter covering the technology industry. She has written extensively about tech giants, emerging technologies, startups and venture capital. Before becoming a journalist she spent several years as a management consultant at Ernst & Young.
How These Ukranian Entrepreneurs Relocated Their Startups to LA and Found Success
Joey Mota

Fleeing war and chasing new opportunities, more than a dozen Ukrainian entrepreneurs have landed in Los Angeles, finding an unexpected community in the city of dreams. These entrepreneurs have started companies that are collectively worth more than $300 million, in industries ranging from electric vehicle charging stations to audience monetization platforms to social networks.

Dot.LA spent an evening with this group of Ukrainian citizens, learning what it was like to build startups in Ukraine, to cope with the unimaginable fear of fleeing war, and to garner the resilience to rebuild.

Read moreShow less