Mold contamination prompts New Jersey district to close all 6 of its schools for at least a week

WPVI-TV reports that the schools—one high, one middle and four elementary—will be closed so inspections can be completed. The district has about 6,200 students.

The announcement of the closings comes just hours before an emergency school board meeting is to be held regarding the situation.

The situation began with the discovery of mold inside Holly Glen Elementary School. The district closed that campus last Friday and was preparing to split the student body among the three remaining elementary schools.

In light of the additional school closings, plans to have teachers prepare replacement classrooms have been postponed, and an open house for students and parents at their temporary schools also has been canceled.

Last week, the district closed Holly Glen after a consultant, TTI Environmental Inc., found dangerous mold growing throughout the school on doors, desks, book cases, lockers, ceiling tiles and other areas. The consultant recommended that Holly Glen be closed and thoroughly cleaned.

“Based on the information provided and the results of our visual investigation and sampling, TTI recommends that the school be closed until cleaning and additional evaluation be conducted to insure the safety of the children and staff,” the consultant’s report stated.

Article Source: http://www.asumag.com/indoor-air-quality-iaq/mold-contamination-prompts-new-jersey-district-close-all-6-its-schools-least

How Hot Summer Months Can Bring Mold Straight Into Your Home!

Summer’s Great But It Can Bring Mold Home Too

It Is Hot & Humid Outside Again

Well, the summer has more than arrived, and everybody is feeling it for the most part. The blistering heat has affected many of our daily lives, and the humidity has drenched us in sweat time, and time again. Summer does not just affect you personally, though, it affects your house too. Of course, it takes a toll on your wallet through your electric bill. Your air conditioning unit is going to have to work a lot harder to keep your house comfortable. That is not all it does, though, and the other effects can be much worse. We are talking about water damage, mold odors, and all different kinds of mold problems.

Why Is Mold So Bad in my Home?

Mold is not good for a lot of reasons. Aside from the fact that it destroys items and property, it can also make you sick. We are not just talking about regular sick like the flu either. Certain types of mold can make you really sick. Not just you either, your pets as well. If your beloved pets consume mold or breathe airborne mold in too long, they may have problems easier than you. Your children and grandparents are also more susceptible to the nasty effects of mold. With that said, mold can do a lot of damage, to you, your home, and your family. There is even a type of mold that can destroy a house over the proper amount of time if left unchecked. How can mold destroy a house, though? Every time your air conditioner clicks on and slowly cools the air, small micro-droplets of water condense on the cold coils, coalesce, and create water.  A drain usually facilitates the collection and removal of the moisture.  Yet, when the drain system backs up minor drips begin to back up, and slowly move moisture to the walls.  Along with time and moisture, mold grows a little bit like weeds as other plants do. It will grow until the space it is in does not fit it anymore. Does that mean that the mold stops growing? Absolutely not, it means that it expands the space it is in on its own.  It will fill the interior walls and spaces below your air conditioner with visible mold and mold spores inside your home.

How To Prevent Mold From Growing

There are a lot of ways to prevent different kinds of mold from growing. There are a lot of old wives tales of how to do it too, so you need to beware of these.  First, you need to know how mold grows in the first place. Mold grows when it is moist in an area with no ventilation or very little. It forms from bacteria thriving on that moisture and a lack of moving air to move it out of one particular place. Where does this normally happen, though? A lot more places than you may think.   Mold forms easily in the following places; Close off rooms and closets. Clogged air conditioning drain lines. Dirty air conditioning ducts and vents. Humid bathrooms ceilings and window frames Sink and tub drains or tile grout and even silicone water proofing seals. Damp or wet bathroom mats or towels. And that is just to name a few of the many places that mold can develop quickly. All of these are simply caused by a combination of moisture and lack of ventilation. With that said, the very air you are breathing right now might have mold particles in it from your air conditioning or other areas of your home.

Mold In Your Air Conditioning

There are a lot of causes that can create mold in your air conditioning system and a lot of areas mold can be found.  Black mold spores may be in the air conditioning coils, plenum, and even the air conditioning ducts.   You actually can prevent a fair amount of these problems simply by having your air conditioning system Inspected or cleaned out regularly. Sure you could do this yourself, but it might be better to have someone with the proper tools do it for you.  A professional Air duct cleaning company or specialized air conditioning company can usually clean your system. The price might be a tad high, but the hospital bills or funeral will not have to be covered that way. Seriously, if you have not had your system cleaned in a while, then it is probably time to get in inspected, or just do it. Black mold is one of the worst kinds of mold, period, and it grows it most air conditioning systems regularly when water damage occurs. Aside from the ducts and vents themselves, mold loves to grow in and around your air conditioning. If you have your system in the garage, closet or even the attic of your house, it might be a good idea to take a look around. You will be surprised by what you find.  Water stains, water damage, and mold growing on the drywall. Aside from hiring a professional to clean your system, you should regularly clean and make sure there is proper drainage for things like your air conditioning drain or hot water heater. Mold, dust, pet hair, and particulates that impact the air conditioning filter also significantly reduce the airflow into your house from your air conditioning. Not only will that make your system work harder to cool your house, but naturally it will cost you more money and the electric bill. It is just worth it to spend 5 minutes and inspect your air conditioning system and keep it free of all types of mold.

Steps You Can Take To A Cleaner A/c System

  1. First, you need to take a look at your vents with the air blowing to check for small debris or odors coming from it.
  1. Check or have your air conditioning filters changed routinely.  Usually every 3-6 months is recommended by most manufacturers.
  1. If you smell heavy odors coming out the closet or attic, then this is a likely sign of water damage and bacteria build up that need to be cleaned out.
  1. Keep a good eye on how often your a/c runs.  Do you hear it cycle on and off?
  1. How often are doors and windows opened?
  1. Do not run your system forever, it needs a break too.  Listen for loud system starts and stops, as this can also be a sign of a problem.

  If you don’t hear the AC cycle, or it makes really loud noises you may need to turn it off and call a professional air conditioning contractor to inspect or repair the ac unit.

What About The Rest Of The House?

  Well, it does help if you clean out things like drainage pipes in general. This covers your sink, toilet, and tub drains. You also want to wash damp clothes and linens quickly, even if they are not that dirty, as they are a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Forget the fact that is stinks, it is bad all around. Closets should be regularly cleaned, and the door left open from time to time, to allow for good ventilation. Just keep the place clean, tidy and well ventilated in general. That way you will have less of a problem with mold.   If you need help finding mold within your home be sure to call FunGuy Mold Inspections in Los Angeles.

8 + 14 =

Mold In Your Air Conditioning

There are a lot of causes that can create mold in your air conditioning system and a lot of areas mold can be found.  Black mold spores may be in the air conditioning coils, plenum, and even the air conditioning ducts.   You actually can prevent a fair amount of these problems simply by having your air conditioning system Inspected or cleaned out regularly. Sure you could do this yourself, but it might be better to have someone with the proper tools do it for you.  A professional Air duct cleaning company or specialized air conditioning company can usually clean your system. The price might be a tad high, but the hospital bills or funeral will not have to be covered that way. Seriously, if you have not had your system cleaned in a while, then it is probably time to get in inspected, or just do it. Black mold is one of the worst kinds of mold, period, and it grows it most air conditioning systems regularly when water damage occurs.

Steps You Can Take To A Cleaner A/c System

  1. First, you need to take a look at your vents with the air blowing to check for small debris or odors coming from it.
  1. Check or have your air conditioning filters changed routinely.  Usually every 3-6 months is recommended by most manufacturers.
  1. If you smell heavy odors coming out the closet or attic, then this is a likely sign of water damage and bacteria build up that need to be cleaned out.
  1. Keep a good eye on how often your a/c runs.  Do you hear it cycle on and off?
  1. How often are doors and windows opened?
  1. Do not run your system forever, it needs a break too.  Listen for loud system starts and stops, as this can also be a sign of a problem.

If you don’t hear the AC cycle, or it makes really loud noises you may need to turn it off and call a professional air conditioning contractor to inspect or repair the ac unit.

We don’t often think that our air conditioning system that cools our house can cause water damage and mold problems.  In short, an air conditioner removes moisture from the air and it naturally drains outdoors or in a dedicated drain line.  Clogging of the drain can cause water damage and real mold problems.  Learn how to prevent mold in your air conditioning system and schedule a routine inspection today.

  1. Closed Off Rooms, Closets, Doors, and Mold That Grow’s Black.
    1. Improper ventilation and increased humidity in a room or closet can cause mold growth on walls and ceilings.
    2. Not only on the surface of the walls, but also you clothes, bags, and other belongings.
    3. This problem is easy to remedy : learn more and contact funguy
  2. Clogged Air Conditioning Drain Lines.
    1. This problem can occur naturally and unless you monitor the air conditioning closet you’ll probably never know about the water damage and mold problem that exist.
    2. Some bacteria, dust, and debris built up on the coils over time can reduce air flow and increase the chance of clogging the drain, water damage, and then eventually mold.
    3. Looking for a solution to this problem, contact a funguy mold inspector today to look at your air condition system.
  3. 4 Steps to a Cleaner Air Conditioning System
    1. Look: Do you notice fiber glass, heavy dust, or odors coming from the air conditioning ducts or registers?.  This could be a sign of contamination.
    2. Smell: Check for  heavy or unusual odors coming from normal operation of your air conditioning system?
    3. Monitor: Overuse, opening doors, and Improper cycling can cause continuous running of the system and blockages.
    4. Listen: Do you notice that air conditioner never shuts off and on?  Listen closely, does it run continuously?    A healthy air conditioner will cycle on and off during normal operations.  Of course upon starting up and heavier indoor loads an air conditioner will run to meet demand.

Maintenance – Contact a certified mold inspector or air conditioning specialist for maintenance and scheduled maintenance plans today.

Local home inspector elected CREIA Director

A local home and mold inspector

has been elected as State Director of the California Real Estate Inspectors Association (CREIA).

Mr. Zivolich and has been providing home and mold inspections for 17 years in the North Bay and Orange County with his family owned firm, Guaranteed Property and Mold Inspections, http://www.gpinspect.com.Local mold inspector and test for mold

The elected position of State Director provides a direct liaison between the general membership of certified home inspectors and the CREIA board of directors. The Director also serves as a member of the Policy and Oversight committee which is responsible for reviewing financial procedures and historical board decisions. In addition, the position completes an annual staff performance report, that is submitted to the board of directors.

Since 1976, CREIA, a non-profit organization has been providing education, training, and support services to the real estate inspection industry, as well as to the public in the State of California. Certified inspectors must adhere to CREIA’s Code of Ethics and follow the CREIA Standards of Practice developed by the association. CREIA requires its certified inspectors to successfully pass a written test of property systems and complete 30 hours of continuing education each year.

Home inspections began as a new consumer real estate service in the early 1970s, when buyers began hiring general building contractors to perform inspections on homes they wanted to buy. As the home inspection industry grew, it soon became apparent that the depth of knowledge required to properly evaluate a home’s systems and components was beyond the capability of most general contractors. Slowly the term “Contractor’s Inspection” was dropped in favor of “Home Inspector” as Certified Home Inspectors were now looked upon as industry experts to confirm the current condition a home’s overall health. By the 1990s, mostly due to California real estate law and increasing consumer awareness, home inspections became “de-facto” and the majority of homes sold in today’s market are inspected. Locating and scheduling home inspectors was generally in the realm of the real estate agent representing the buyer or seller, but as Certified Inspector associations like CREIA grew, more home buyers have begun seeking qualified CREIA home inspectors on their own.

Many real estate agents are still threatened by the home or mold inspection industry, but more experienced agents recognize the idea that a professionally performed inspection not only could be employed as a marketing tool, but may help shield them from potential litigation after the close of escrow for both the agent and their client.

The famous Easton vs. Strassberger lawsuit changed this idea from a theory to a fact. This landmark case occurred in 1984 when the court held that the duties of a real estate broker include “the affirmative duty to conduct a reasonably competent and diligent inspection of the residential property listed for sale and to disclose to prospective purchasers all facts materially affecting the value of the property that such investigation would reveal.” Many real estate agents now recognize that it is prudent to refer CREIA independent experts to provide a complete and thorough inspection for their client.

This had the effect of a major increase in homes being checked by professional certified CREIA inspectors before the close of escrow and according to a 2009 NAR statistics close to 90% of all homes in California are now inspected. In some parts of the country the percentage of homes inspected are even higher.

“CREIA is truly dedicated to consumer protection and education,” stated Steve Zivolich, “When you choose a home or mold inspector, you should specify membership in CREIA. When choosing a home or mold inspector, let the final selection be your own. Don’t rely on others to make the choice for you. What you want is the most meticulous, detailed home and or mold inspector available—the one who will save you from costly surprises after the close of escrow, as well as protecting the health and safety of your family.”

Mr. Zivolich’s two year term as State Director begins on July1, 2016. He also serves on the National Microbial Certification Board, for the American Council for Accredited Certification.

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=http://www.prweb.com/releases/2016/05/prweb13383124.htm&ct=ga&cd=CAEYACoUMTEyNTcyMjExNjc5ODQxMzc0ODIyGjdlYTBkOWQ3YzNiNmNhNzg6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNGBFqUVPTBL2jpFybWwG__PcMLizg

Mold in my walls Calabasas

Mold in my walls

Los Angeles residents learn about the mold in the walls of your home

Have you experienced a recent overflow, back up, or recognized a new leak in your home?  Chances are that you’ve already taken a look at it, decided to feel if were wet or not with your hand, and decided to go about your everyday life.  Would you, could you, even imagine saying to yourself; “Is there Mold in my walls”?

It doesn’t take a lot of water to allow 1 mold spore to grow into a mold colony.  Inside this wall cavity our mold inspector located the presence of yellow, grey, white, and green molds growing on the drywall.  Not every mold has to be black to cause damage to our homes. whatdoesmoldlooklikeinsidemyhomewoodlandhillsmoldremoval Different types of mold will grow in walls, depending on the amount of time and available moisture. The different colors of mold can typically indicate primary vrs. secondary colonizers after water damage has occurred in your walls.  Look at the picture to the left . .

The camera is point up the inside of a wall cavity.

Mold in my walls!  A building wall cavity is a perfect environment for mold to grow after water damage.  The wall cavity space keeps the humidity at a perfect level for mold to grow.  In addition, other materials such as insulation can increase humidity and moisture levels to help sustain mold in the walls over a longer period of time.

Do you think mold is in your walls?

Learn More
In order to combat the growth of mold in my walls, I would contact a mold remediation company as soon as possible to help dry down the building.  If the problem is less than a gallon of water, a homeowner might be able to get some fans and dry down the area. Professional mold removal companies employ dehumidifiers and fans to prevent the growth of mold in walls.  Daily monitoring of the building materials moisture is completed everyday to ensure the materials are drying and limit the ability of mold to grow. If I suspected mold in my walls, a local mold inspection company could help me by sampling the air quality, destructively investigating the wall, or sampling the air inside the wall. Many thing can be done to prevent the growth of mold in walls.  Learn more today.

MDF board growing mold

mdf-board-growing-mold inside your home woodland hillsMoldy MDF Boards

Mold will grow on and inside the porous MDF board

It is possible for medium density fiber (MDF) board to promote mold growth anywhere in your home including your sub-floor.

With enough water and time the semi porous fibers and glue begin to expand and allow mold to grow on and in the MDF board.  If recognized during a mold inspection, a certified mold inspector may recommend that the building materials have to be removed and replaced.  In this case, the mold inspector may have recognized that the overall integrity, moisture level, and composition of the materials have been compromised.  It may seem odd and peculiar but mold growth may be in between the layers of wood.  Water damage causes the materials to expand and create gaps.  This space in between the material promotes the growth of mold.  It soon becomes a dark and moist area for mold to thrive.

Items currently made of MDF board in your home may include your baseboards, bathroom cabinet, dressers, kitchen cabinets, crown moldings, window moldings, exterior plywood, and even the sub-floor.

Wikipedia:

Medium-density fibreboard (MDF) is an engineered wood product made by breaking down hardwood or softwood residuals into wood fibres, often in a defibrator, combining it with wax and a resin binder, and forming panels by applying high temperature and pressure.[1] MDF is generally denser than plywood. It is made up of separated fibres, but can be used as a building material similar in application to plywood. It is stronger and much denser than particle board.[2]

The name derives from the distinction in densities of fibreboard. Large-scale production of MDF began in the 1980s, in both North America and Europe.[3]

Wiki link

Is that black mold on your t-shirt?

Is that black mold on your t-shirt?

Moldy t-shirts and clothing are normally . . .

cleaned when contaminated with mold.  Putting a slightly different twist on this new story that incorporates mold and bacteria as a substitute dye used for clothing. This leads us to the question, “if mold is being used as a dye, how can these researchers remove all bad things that go along with mold?”  Most people become allergic to the little pieces of mold, mold spores, and sometimes react to the mVOCs (microbial volatile organic compounds).  Let’s see if the research below can break the mold about how people ultimately view these harmful organisms.

Zemanta Related Posts

Zemanta Related Posts

Two master’s students from the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) are trying to spark the country’s interest in the sustainable fashion movement by developing items colored with fungus and bacteria, including those that can be easily found in your bathroom.

Don’t you hate it when black mold grows on your white shirt? Instead of trying hard to clean it with bleach or vinegar, you could let the mold grow further, giving a splash of new color to your old shirt.

The idea perhaps sounds silly, but that is exactly what Nidiya Kusmaya had in mind when she started her final thesis at ITB.
moldonclothingandhouseholdmaterialsthatareporous
She discovered the hidden beauty of Aspergillus niger, a micro fungus responsible for the black mold on damp clothes.

“People see Aspergillus niger as something disgusting, something to avoid. In fact, the fungus is valuable; it can act as a pigment producer in textiles,” said Nidiya, an awardee of the leading scholarship from the Foreign Cooperation Bureau (BU BPKLN) of the Research and Technology and Higher Education Ministry.

Research conducted previously in the United Kingdom on pigment-producing bacteria prompted her to discover the interesting shades produced by fungus and bacteria that thrive in the tropical climate of Indonesia.

Aside from the black Aspergillus niger, she also cultivated two other fungi: the orange Monascus sp. and the white Trichoderma.

“Monascus can harm plants, but not humans. It can be found in the traditional Chinese medicine angkak [red yeast rice]. Meanwhile, Trichoderma fertilizes soil,” she said.

Nidiya also experimented with Serratia marcescens, a red and pink bacterium that usually grows in the corners of bathrooms.

“It can cause infections, but using it as a pigment producer is safe,” she said, adding that garments coated with the bacteria were sterilized at an elevated pressure and temperature in an autoclave.

Nidiya only uses natural fabrics like silk and cotton because they can withstand the heating process.

Little wonder: Nindiya Kusmaya, a student of the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), works with a number of micro fungi and bacteria to create natural pigments in garments.
Little wonder: Nindiya Kusmaya, a student of the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), works with a number of micro fungi and bacteria to create natural pigments in garments.

In one neckwear collection, she sprinkled different fungus and bacteria onto the fabric and let them form natural patterns.

“It appears that bacteria and fungus can communicate. When they meet, they create bold colors,” she said about her research, which was conducted under the guidance of ITB lecturers Kahfiati Kahdar and Imam Santosa.

In another collection, she orchestrated the bacteria and fungus to form batik and tie-dye patterns.

Mold Growing on Shoes

Mold Growing on Shoes

“I drew patterns using antifungal and antibiotic pastes before applying the fungus and the bacteria. As a result, they did not grow on the specified areas on the garment,” she added.

Based on her experience as a professional textile designer, Nidiya believes that fungus and bacteria could provide a new avenue for the fashion industry — the world’s second most polluting industry, second only to oil, according to the Danish Fashion Institute in 2013.

“Coloring textiles requires loads of chemicals and it gives me a headache every time I need to dump the wastewater,” she said.

In contrast to chemical coloring substances, the wastewater of the fungus and bacteria-colored garments do not pose harm to the environment.

“I want to discover more bacteria and fungus, and combine them with natural coloring, such as turmeric. I hope it will inspire people to make an industry out of it,” Nidiya said, adding that the coloring process was not much different to making tempeh in a home industry.

Nidiya hopes to start a textile brand focusing on sustainable, biodegradable products to cater to her fashion designer clients who still favor natural pigments and the organic patterns that they produce.

She humorously describes one of her textile creations as looking like “a bloody crime scene on the Dexter TV series”.

“Perhaps the planned patterns are suitable for the general market, while the natural patterns belong to haute couture, serving as a fashion statement,” she said.

Sapta Soemowidjoko, another BU BPKLN awardee who recently completed his master’s degree in design at ITB, created a garment from Kombucha, a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast popularly called scoby.

Moldy t-shirts and clothing are normally cleaned when contaminated with mold.  Putting a slightly different twist on this new story that incorporates mold and bacteria as a substitute dye used for clothing. This leads us to the question, “if mold is being used as a dye, how can these researchers remove all bad things that go along with mold?”  Most people become allergic to the little pieces of mold, mold spores, and sometimes react to the mVOCs (microbial volatile organic compounds).  Let’s see if the research below can break the mold about how people ultimately view these harmful organisms.

Two master’s students from the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) are trying to spark the country’s interest in the sustainable fashion movement by developing items colored with fungus and bacteria, including those that can be easily found in your bathroom.

Don’t you hate it when black mold grows on your white shirt? Instead of trying hard to clean it with bleach or vinegar, you could let the mold grow further, giving a splash of new color to your old shirt.

The idea perhaps sounds silly, but that is exactly what Nidiya Kusmaya had in mind when she started her final thesis at ITB.

She discovered the hidden beauty of Aspergillus niger, a micro fungus responsible for the black mold on damp clothes.

“People see Aspergillus niger as something disgusting, something to avoid. In fact, the fungus is valuable; it can act as a pigment producer in textiles,” said Nidiya, an awardee of the leading scholarship from the Foreign Cooperation Bureau (BU BPKLN) of the Research and Technology and Higher Education Ministry.

Research conducted previously in the United Kingdom on pigment-producing bacteria prompted her to discover the interesting shades produced by fungus and bacteria that thrive in the tropical climate of Indonesia.

Aside from the black Aspergillus niger, she also cultivated two other fungi: the orange Monascus sp. and the white Trichoderma.

“Monascus can harm plants, but not humans. It can be found in the traditional Chinese medicine angkak [red yeast rice]. Meanwhile, Trichoderma fertilizes soil,” she said.

Nidiya also experimented with Serratia marcescens, a red and pink bacterium that usually grows in the corners of bathrooms.

“It can cause infections, but using it as a pigment producer is safe,” she said, adding that garments coated with the bacteria were sterilized at an elevated pressure and temperature in an autoclave.

Nidiya only uses natural fabrics like silk and cotton because they can withstand the heating process.

Little wonder: Nindiya Kusmaya, a student of the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), works with a number of micro fungi and bacteria to create natural pigments in garments.
Little wonder: Nindiya Kusmaya, a student of the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), works with a number of micro fungi and bacteria to create natural pigments in garments.

In one neckwear collection, she sprinkled different fungus and bacteria onto the fabric and let them form natural patterns.

“It appears that bacteria and fungus can communicate. When they meet, they create bold colors,” she said about her research, which was conducted under the guidance of ITB lecturers Kahfiati Kahdar and Imam Santosa.

In another collection, she orchestrated the bacteria and fungus to form batik and tie-dye patterns.

“I drew patterns using antifungal and antibiotic pastes before applying the fungus and the bacteria. As a result, they did not grow on the specified areas on the garment,” she added.

Based on her experience as a professional textile designer, Nidiya believes that fungus and bacteria could provide a new avenue for the fashion industry — the world’s second most polluting industry, second only to oil, according to the Danish Fashion Institute in 2013.

“Coloring textiles requires loads of chemicals and it gives me a headache every time I need to dump the wastewater,” she said.

In contrast to chemical coloring substances, the wastewater of the fungus and bacteria-colored garments do not pose harm to the environment.

“I want to discover more bacteria and fungus, and combine them with natural coloring, such as turmeric. I hope it will inspire people to make an industry out of it,” Nidiya said, adding that the coloring process was not much different to making tempeh in a home industry.

Nidiya hopes to start a textile brand focusing on sustainable, biodegradable products to cater to her fashion designer clients who still favor natural pigments and the organic patterns that they produce.

She humorously describes one of her textile creations as looking like “a bloody crime scene on the Dexter TV series”.

“Perhaps the planned patterns are suitable for the general market, while the natural patterns belong to haute couture, serving as a fashion statement,” she said.

Sapta Soemowidjoko, another BU BPKLN awardee who recently completed his master’s degree in design at ITB, created a garment from Kombucha, a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast popularly called scoby.

Kombucha can be easily found in Chinese traditional medicine stores and can be used to make Kombucha fermented tea. While the health benefits of Kombucha are still debated, it could certainly be used for fashion items.

Inspired by Kombucha material created by New York-based designer Suzanne Lee, Sapta added a twist to the ground-breaking garment by combining it with a web of bamboo threads.

The current fashion industry heavily depends on animal and plant-based fibers, such as silk and cotton. Kombucha material could be a solution, but Sapta understands that many people still have doubts about wearing bacteria and yeast as clothing.

Thus, he combines the material with something familiar — bamboo threads.

“Kombucha material has been used as a medical textile and amplifier, so why can’t it cross into the fashion world?” he said. “I created this fabric to serve as a bridge for us to reach a fashion future.”

In his research conducted under the guidance of ITB lecturers Kahfiati Kahdar and Andar Bagus Sriwarno, Sapta pulped the scoby in a food processor and put it in a rectangular container. He placed a web of bamboo threads in the box as the Kombucha juice grew.

After trial and error, he managed to get the desired result, in which the bamboo web was inside a Kombucha blob. After it reached 2 centimeters in thickness, the newly made garment was washed and dried.

While the trial and error seemed arduous, the fact that Sapta cultivated the garment in his house gives hope that other people could develop the process into a home industry.

“To attach the garment pieces to one another, you just need to iron them. You can hand-stitch and cut them with scissors and multi-cutting devices,” he said.

For his final thesis, Sapta developed Plan B, a bowtie and suspender collection to represent the synergy of science and art in the products.

“I chose bowties because they are synonymous with scientists. Plan B basically means our next plan. B stands for bacterial cellulose, bamboo, a bridge to a fashion future,” he said.

Sapta hopes his research can inspire another slow fashion initiatives and, in the long term, help to slowly reduce the dependency on plant-based fibers.

Slow fashion, which is still largely unheard of in Indonesia, is a growing trend within the fashion world for sustainable, ethical clothing. It is the opposition of the “fast food” approach to fashion, namely fast and cheap production that results in exhausted resources and excesses of barely used clothing.

Slow fashion still has some challenges to overcome, though. The acidic smell of the Kombucha garments, for example, could be the main hurdle for it to be accepted by fashionistas.

“People always want to smell nice. It is understandable that when you wear the garment, you don’t want people to sniff you and assume that the pungent smell comes from your body,” Sapta said.

But, he said, wearing a little bow tie will not lead people to smell you. Instead, it gives you an interesting conversation topic at parties, where people will approach and ask: “Where did you get that bowtie?”
– See more at: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2016/03/07/growing-fungus-and-bacteria-textiles-fashion.html#sthash.GLgs2SWq.dpuf