Sewbo Inc. is a Seattle company that hopes to revolutionize the garment industry with its automated sewing process that can successfully assemble t-shirts.
To create machine-sewed t-shirts, Sewbo uses a robotic arm and a material called polyvinyl alcohol. While there are currently machines that can cut and measure fabric, assembly with soft materials has been an insurmountable hurdle for robots. Sewbo's polyvinyl alcohol solution hardens textiles, allowing the Sewbo robot to treat them like pieces of sheet metal. Once the hard pieces of cloth are sewn together, the robot drops the shirt in a solution that removes the polyvinyl alcohol, leaving a wearable t-shirt.
One of the biggest problems that has plagued the garment industry in modern years is its treatment of textile and assembly workers. Sewbo's automated sewing has the potential to ameliorate this issue without increasing the cost of shirts for retailers and consumers.