Monday, January 28, 2013

Diversifying clothing materials Part 2

The word' sustainable' is the new buzz word. we had green and organic now we have sustainable.

What sustainable materials are there for clothing and fashion and how easy are they to come by.


Linen is available in several colours from beige to grey but white linen has invariably been bleached.

  • It can be washed at high temperatures of 95 degrees enabling it to be washed clean
  • It does not go in a tumble dryer but needs to be dried and then ironed while still damp.
  • Linen gets stronger when it is wet
  • Linen is a breathable material
  • Linen is virtually lint free, non allergenic and gives UV protection.
  • Linen is durable, strong and although a bit stiff at the beginning, washing improves it to get softer as it ages.
  • Ideal fabric for summer clothing as it is cool
  • According to some studies a person wearing linen perspires less than someone wearing cotton.

Sources of linen

Linen yarn is currently being produced as 100% linen yarn or 50% linen/50% cotton by a variety of companies such as Rowan or Patons  for knitting and crochet and many patterns are available to make tops. It is becoming a popular fibre choice for spring and summer.

Linen clothes can be bought direct from a few designers including Terry Macey and Anjelika Elsebach in Somerset but if you are looking to make your own clothes and learn the skills necessary to make your own clothes, then fabric is widely available.

Personally I now have the pattern for my linen trousers to make them in February 2013 and if succesful and they fit (?) I will add them to my sustainable wardrobe.

In part 3 we will explore Hemp.

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