Bolt Threads, a biotech startup, is looking to bring a little science into the world of style. For its neckties, the company produces silk with courtesy of an unlikely inspiration—spiders.
Spider silk, with which it weaves webs, is known for its durability and softness, but has long been difficult to recreate, Men’s Health reports. Bolt Threads spent seven years studying the properties of this elusive material to replicate them.
As a result of this intense research, the company created its own protein with similar properties by gene editing yeast cells, Bolt Threads recently announced. Through a fermentation process, the proteins are produced in large batches and are then spun into threads like normal silk.
Bolt Threads debuted its synthetic spider silk ties this week at SXSW as a proof of concept for a line of other products it plans to develop with Patagonia.
Available in a limited release, the company is selling 50 ties made from the material through a lotto (which can be entered here).