Enviro-Textiles - Sustainable Hemp Fabric
As someone who is pursuing a career in the fashion world, I find myself constantly torn between an industry that holds my wildest dreams and my human obligation to protect the planet. I don't want to be another fashion blogger pressuring you to consume irresponsibly. I don't want my posts to be mindless and desperate just to have constant content. I won't be perfect on this mission but I will always be conscious and I want to promote consciousness.
The truth is, the fashion industry's textile production business is the 2nd largest polluter in the world. What we wear is made with chemicals that poison the planet by dumping them into water sources and using huge amounts of resources to create. And worse, no care for the people doing the labor. Hemp uses less than half the resources, half the time to grow to harvest and is more durable than other fibers.
With legalization of recreational marijuana in 2018, the California "Green Rush" is in full effect. This had me thinking a lot about hemp fabric. My only experience with that it has felt coarse and scratchy or like canvas and not pleasant against skin, better for bags and rope. I know hemp fabric can be tough and strong... but could it be as soft as cotton? Society is warming up to decriminalizing the herb and Hemp has been used for centuries as clothing but where does the plant stand in fashion world today?
I came across Envirotextiles in THC Magazine The Hemp Connoisseur I picked up at Barnes and Noble. They are leading the hemp textile industry and run their business from Colorado. Envirotextiles was founded by CEO Barbara Filippone. Once I read about Barbara's journey in the textile industry she instantly became my new girlboss crush! She has lived and worked her whole life with fabrics to develop a company and industry that sets the bar for eco-friendly textiles and yes, softer hemp blended fabric. She is literally Captain Planet!
Envirotextiles supplies hemp textiles with the highest sustainability standards. They have supplied and have been connected with major brands like Donatella Versace, Calvin Clein, Adidas, Fruit of the Loom and Sean John, to name drop a few. Designers are welcoming hemp, even fast fashion companies are turning a new leaf, moving toward the green life like the H&M Conscious Collection that launched in 2016. I am sure more companies would make the switch or incorporate it into their collections but for now it is still being imported from other countries (still under the eye of Barbara). Once hemp can be farmed in the United States we will see a boom in hemp fashion (and jobs) that I am personally so excited for!
I have been working on my own recycled, California and marijuana culture inspired apparel and decided to Order Samples from the Envirotextile website to see and feel exactly what I could be getting myself into if I wanted to design with hemp. And with my delivery of swatches I found out that I have a surprising amount of options!
Photographed above are a couple that caught my eye. I love the Olive (not shown) and Indigo twill (77% hemp) as well as the various colors of Charmeuse (70% hemp).The softer knits were nice as well and still ranged over 50% hemp. They even had a couple faux fur samples (41% hemp)! You can also order hemp T-shirts and more from the website.
Let's embrace the versatile marijuana plant and the many products that can be made with hemp like plastic , biofuel, paper and more! I plan on talking about it more on the blog and introducing more hemp products I love especially in the beauty department. Yes, hemp oil is also great for skin care! We can lower our impact on the planet and fashion can lead the way. I hope this has you thinking about the process that made your clothes and no matter what your opinion is on marijuana, it's not all about getting high.
Green is the new black