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Sustainable fabrics in clothing -- bamboo the next frontier?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

 

Check out this link to an article on bamboo as the next gen in sustainable fabrics.  Bamboo is apparently one of the world's fastest growing plans (maturity in 3-4 years, vs. 25-70 years for domestic commercial tree species...I think that's a pretty impressive statistic).  Also, bamboo uniquely doesn't require pesticides to produce (also unlike other natural fibers) -- sounds good to me.

 

Anyone have experience with bamboo fabric already?  How is it?  The only "green" fabric I've tried is hemp and organic cotton....

 

post #2 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lola:

 

Anyone have experience with bamboo fabric already?  How is it?  The only "green" fabric I've tried is hemp and organic cotton....

 

 

I actually have a few things made from bamboo (last year's West Coat Green volunteer t-shirt and bed sheets being two of them).  It's a really soft fabric.  I highly recommend it. 

post #3 of 20

I remember reading somewhere a while back that bamboo used as fabric isn't as environmentally friendly as you might think because of some of the processes it goes through to make it fabric-like.

 

Unfortunately I don't remember the details or where I read the article.  Possibly on treehugger.  A Google search would probably reveal some useful information on the subject.

 

We installed a bamboo floor from Ikea a few months back.  Bamboo is definitely an environmentally friendly flooring option, because it grows so much faster than hardwoods.


Edited by dana1981 - Tue, 8 Apr 2008 19:00:40 UTC
post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 

 Yep, my parents have bamboo flooring and it looks/feels awesome.  It's a very soft wood, though, so it doesn't stand up as well to heavy furniture/scratches, etc.  But it's definitely cool and eco-friendly!

post #5 of 20

Triple Pundit actually has a front page article on bamboo flooring today.

 


Bamboo flooring has gained popularity as an environmentally sustainable building material that is stronger than most hardwoods. Manufactured from a grass that reaches full maturity in 3-6 years, bamboo flooring has been lauded as an attractive green building material that has numerous advantages that go beyond environmental concerns.

 

Currently there are three styles of bamboo flooring being manufactured. Horizontal flooring is the style often associated with bamboo flooring. It uses strips, called fillets, of bamboo that run parallel to the floor. This allows the knuckles of the bamboo to be prominently featured in the pattern of the flooring. Horizontal flooring uses fillets that are assembled so they are perpendicular to the floor, displaying the narrowest edge of the strips. This creates subtly stripped flooring that is similar to many wood grains.

 

Strand woven flooring is created when the waste strips used from filleting the bamboo are coated with resin and compressed into timbers using heat. These timbers are then milled to create tongue and grove planks. The strand woven process significantly increases the strength of the material when compared to other bamboo flooring styles.

 


(Read the rest over at Triple Pundit)

post #6 of 20

Cool.  Yeah, horizontal striping is what we've got.  It looks really nice.

post #7 of 20

I don't normally like getting sustainability facts from manufacturers, but the guys at Lela designs have a bit to say about the sustainability of bamboo.  From experience I can say that my bamboo socks and napkins are far softer than I expected.  My wife has made some things from both soy yarn (yarn made from spent hunks) and bamboo yarn and both have an amazing feel. 

 

from http://leladesigns.ca/fabric-faqs.php

 

Bamboo:

Bamboo is nature’s most sustainable resource. It is grown without pesticides or chemicals, it is 100% biodegradable and is naturally regenerative. Bamboo is a fast growing plant with shoots averaging 24 to 36 inches or more in a 24 hour period.

Bamboo fabric is naturally anti-microbial, hypoallergenic and thermal regulating.  It is also resistant to mould.  After multiple washings, over 70% of the bacteria cultured on bamboo textiles are destroyed by the fiber.  Bamboo breathes and wicks moisture away due to its porous nature.  Bamboo also has an excellent drape and a silky-cashmere feel.

 


Edited by vegipowrd - Sun, 20 Apr 2008 18:40:04 GMT
post #8 of 20

I think there is some concern about the ethical side of bamboo manufacturing not neccesarily the production end, it is manufactured right now only in China so there is immense pressure on the manufacturers to start clear cutting forests to grow bamboo.  There was some talk that they were using fertilizer to help speed up the growing rate but it's been downplayed now to just other chemical cotton manufacturers planting that seed.   I still feel however that the benefits of this fabric outweigh the supposed cons.  Organic cotton is always the better choice but bamboo and soy have such a luxurious feel to them!  I sell bamboo and organic cotton clothing for children and I still think it is important to support these industries over conventional cotton, silk and man made materials.

post #9 of 20

thanx for the info. i currently use organic cotton but have been interested in bamboo. Photobucket

<a href="http://s291.photobucket.com/albums/ll294/nonfriction/?action=view&current=OILFINcopy.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/ll294/nonfriction/OILFINcopy.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>


Edited by non-friction - Tue, 6 May 2008 02:22:33 UTC


Edited by non-friction - Tue, 6 May 2008 02:25:51 UTC
post #10 of 20

I really like that sweater...where is it from?

post #11 of 20

Where do you get bamboo clothing from?  I know we don't have anything like that in my area.  I was able to find two shirts made from organic cotton and recycled polyester, but that is as close to environmental friendly as I have been able to get.  I would love some more organic cotton or bamboo clothing.

post #12 of 20

There is a neat bamboo company called Bamboosa.

post #13 of 20

I love the socks from Bamboosa.

 

Quote:
 

Originally Posted by EarthMamaKylie:

There is a neat bamboo company called Bamboosa.


 

post #14 of 20

Here is some good information about Bamboosa's product:

 

https://www.bamboosa.com/boombosa.php?PID=17

 

It does look pretty cool.

post #15 of 20

Thanks for this!  I might have to start ordering from them.  They also have some retailers about an hour from where I live that sell some of their products.

post #16 of 20

Little plug here for me:

I sell their t-shirts on my website:

www.healingwithorganics.com

currently out of their socks. big seller.

 

Quote:
 

Originally Posted by Jennifer:

Thanks for this!  I might have to start ordering from them.  They also have some retailers about an hour from where I live that sell some of their products.


 

post #17 of 20

The article "Shades of Green: Decoding Eco Fashion Claims,"  http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB121158336716218711-lMyQjAxMDI4MTIxNTUyODUzWj.html outlines pros and cons of different types of eco fashion (organic cotton, bamboo, clothing made with recyled materials, and so forth).  It mentions the chemicals used in the processing of bamboo as a major con.  From this article, seems like organic cotton is the most environmentally friendly. 

 

 

A great place to find organic cotton apparel and accessories is Maggie's Organics.  www.maggiesorganics.com  Not only is their clothing organic, but also fair trade.  They were instrumental in starting a worker owned cooperative in Nicaragua, that has helped hurricane refugees create a new life for themselves and their families.  They even have a new Maggie's Outlet where you can find great discounts on some of their products.  http://www.maggiesorganics.com/products_item.php?cat_id=9  My favorite is the cross top shirt!

 

 

 

post #18 of 20

i make baby clothing, blankets and diapers for my wahb on hyenacart....everything is organic bamboo fleece, velour, jersey, or terry....it is amazingly soft and absorbant which is perfect for cloth diapers

post #19 of 20

for anyone living in canada http://www.bambooclothes.ca is a great webstore

post #20 of 20

I thought folks on this thread might be interested in a good holiday gift giving idea to promote a worth while product. The launch of  Sierra Club organic socks is now under way through the end of the year and the socks are made from certified organic cotton and bamboo. You can check them out at http://www.sierraclubsocks.com. The other cool thing about the socks is that for every pair purchased between now and the end of the year, a pair will be donated to the National Coalitions for the Homeless. (There are over 750,000 homeless folks in the US) With winter coming it's a good way to pay it forward while you buy certified organic or bamboo socks for yourself or as a gift for someone else.


Edited by diogenes - Mon, 10 Nov 2008 20:54:09 UTC


Edited by diogenes - Mon, 10 Nov 2008 20:54:25 UTC


Edited by diogenes - Mon, 10 Nov 2008 20:55:07 UTC
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