Organic Fabrics and Fashion

Every day, the textile industry educates itself. The earth has paid a price for environmental harm during the previous few decades. The textile business, like all other industries, is responsible to its end users for the environmental damage it contributes to. This includes the significant carbon footprint it leaves behind, the freshwater resources used to make textiles, and the toxins and waste created by synthetic fibres.

The most environmentally friendly method for producing high-quality organic fibre that is then made into fabric is organic farming. Organic fabric is made from natural fabrics employing organic production methods from the fibre to the finished product stages. In organic farming, fibres are grown in regulated environments without the use of pesticides, hazardous chemicals, or synthetic fertilisers. Federal laws also forbid the use of genetically modified seed in organic farming.

Chemical pesticides are not used in the cultivation of organic fibres like cotton, wool, hemp, linen, or other natural fibres. These organic fibres are produced with little to no hazardous pesticide use and in accordance with national organic regulations. Materials that adhere to the standards for organic agriculture are used to create organic apparel. Textiles with an organic label may not always be made entirely of organic materials. Clothing and household textiles can also be made from organic materials. Organic fabrics are produced in a way that is less harmful to the environment and are eco-friendly.

Organic fibres use less water as well. One way that several manufacturers have been showing increasing interest in eco-fashion is through organic apparel. People of all ages favour wearing environmentally responsible apparel. The cloth is not colour-fast and is soft. In general, organic clothing does not retain chemicals. Therefore, using organic materials will substantially benefit those who have various chemical allergies or any other chemical sensitivity. Eco-friendly organic materials provide a silky feel and may absorb moisture. Additionally, organic materials are excellent for usage in any conditions because they reflect and absorb light. For organic clothes, chemical dyes are not utilised, and the available colour options are few and mostly earth tones. Organic textiles require little maintenance and may be machine washed in cold water.

The process of dying and polishing organic fabrics is rigorously controlled, using no toxic chemicals or dyes. Since they don't utilise chemicals and use natural seeds rather than ones that have been treated, the cost of producing organic fabrics is typically relatively high when compared to conventional fabrics. The supply of organic fabrics is constrained because they are not mass-produced, yet demand for them has increased recently. Previously seen as an option, organic textiles are now essential in the world of fashion. You can help bring about a change by making a conscious effort to buy organic clothing made of hemp or bamboo. Fabric used in organic clothes is permeable, absorbs moisture and preventing rashes or itchy skin. Clothing made of organic fibres is robust and long-lasting.

The extensively utilised and well-known organic cotton is used to manufacture organic clothes. In compared to conventional cotton, 100% certified organic cotton fabric is more environmentally friendly because it has little to no impact on the environment. Separate processing zones are used by organic yarn spinners to separate conventional cotton from organic cotton. There are numerous social and economic concerns associated with conventional cotton farming, particularly for farmers in developing nations.

One of the most widely cultivated crops in the world, cotton requires a lot of pesticides. The air, water, soil, and human health in places where cotton is grown are all severely impacted by the pesticides used in cotton farming. Numerous organic trade organisations keep an eye on the organic farms where the organic fibres are cultivated in order to maintain the quality. In the top five nations—China, India, Turkey, Tanzania, and the United States—nearly 97% of the world's organic cotton fibre is produced. The Textile Exchange's 2014 Organic Market Report estimates that organic cotton goods sold globally reached $15.7 billion in 2014, an increase of 10% from 2013.

Production Process

After organic cotton fibre being handpicked in the farms further process is as below:

●The next step is storage and pre-cleaning of the organic cotton fibres in a separate area.

●Opening, cleaning, drawing, and other organic fibre processing procedures are carried out in batches with meticulous pre-cleaning of all related processing equipment.

●Carding and combing are done on special equipment.

● A physical barrier and separated ring spinning area are used to create organic yarns, preventing cross-contamination with other fibres.

●It takes specialised looms and knitters to produce 100% organic cloth.

●Equipment for processing and transporting organic fibre and yarn is color-coded to indicate its respective category.

●The date of production, machine number, piece length, yarn batch, and other pertinent technical information are tagged on each cloth when it is doffed from the loom or knitter, enabling full monitoring.

●Sizing is done using cornstarch.

●Instead of chlorine molecules, hydrogen peroxide is employed in the bleaching process.

●The toxicity standards for the Low Impact reactive and vat dyes used are ETAD and Oeko-Tex 100. The Ecological and Toxicological Association of Dyes and Organic Pigment Manufacturers is known by the initials ETAD.

Basically, organic clothing producers don't include any dangerous chemicals or fake materials during any stage of the manufacturing process. Natural substitutes are employed in every step of the manufacturing process, from pretreatment to the creation of finished fabric, which lessens and eradicates the hazardous effects associated with traditional cotton.

 Organic Cotton Fabric

Fabric made of organic cotton is composed of cotton fibres that grow on the Earth's surface and have been free of chemical pesticides for at least three years. Compared to other fabrics, organic cotton has a pleasant scent and a soft feel to the touch. This environmentally friendly cloth also doesn't cause allergies. Natural cotton seeds, as opposed to those that have been processed, are used to make organic cotton fibres. Organic cotton fibres are produced naturally, which reduces soil and water pollution.

Fabrics made of organic cotton are particularly absorbent. They frequently experience chilly summers and warm winters. This makes the cloth appealing all year long. Without the use of any chemical fertilisers, organic cotton fabrics are used to create natural clothes. Such organic clothing is simple to maintain. They are machine-washable in cold water with a variety of coloured textiles. Since chemical dyes are not used, the organic cotton fabric used to make this eco-friendly clothes does not come in a wide range of colours.

Environmentally speaking, organic cotton growing uses 88% less water and 62% less energy than conventional cotton farming (which is, to the surprise of many, one of the single dirtiest crops around). To confirm that the cotton was grown without the use of chemicals or mechanical harvesting and processed without the use of chemicals, leaving the finished garment chemical-free, a variety of certifications are used with sustainable and ethical cotton.

Organic Hemp Fabric

Hemp is frequently regarded as an eco-friendly fibre. The hemp fabric used to make this eco-friendly apparel has a fantastic tensile strength, making it sturdy and long-lasting. Natural clothes made of hemp fabric doesn't hurt the wearer's skin or the environment. This fabric softens after each wash and resembles traditional linen cloth in appearance.

The best fabric for the summer is hemp. It is a breathable fabric that properly absorbs moisture. The best option for individuals of all ages is this eco-friendly fabric, which is also UV resistant. Hemp fabric wrinkles readily, therefore it's frequently combined with other materials to give garments a softer hand. The colour fastness of organic hemp fabrics often relies on the type of fabric they are combined with. Both dry cleaning and washing hemp fabric in cold water are simple processes. Numerous commercial products, including garments, ropes, and other items linked to textiles, are made using it.

Organic Jute Fabric

One of the most reasonably priced natural fabrics is jute. The term "golden fibre" is another name for this eco-friendly fabric. The strong and long-lasting fibres used to make organic jute fabric give it many benefits as a textile for the house. Typically, organic jute and cotton are combined to create ecological apparel that is cosy for summer. Because it is inexpensive and soft, organic jute is in high demand. The most environmentally friendly fabric is jute since it can be recycled numerous times before being used for the last time.

Jute fabric is frequently combined with mixtures of other organic textiles to make clothing. Since a few decades ago, this cosy and pleasant fabric has entered the fashion world. Since jute is a rain-fed crop and utilises little to no chemical fertilisers, the fabric is organic and safe for both the wearer's skin and the environment.

Organic Linen

In terms of sustainability, hemp and linen are nearly equivalent. Additionally, the textiles are both incredibly light and permeable. However, the fact that linen is derived from the flax plant makes it different from hemp. Its growth needs extremely little irrigation, fertiliser, and pesticide. However, linen doesn't yield as much as hemp does. Because of its widespread acceptance and dependability, linen is a preferred material for everything from linen bedding to linen apparel.

Because of its delicate texture and sturdy fibre, linen is a preferred fabric for making garments. Natural linen fibre is quite strong and may be woven into thin fabrics. In addition, linen feels good against the skin and is very strong. Additionally, it spontaneously degrades. Due to the extensive manual labour that goes into its manufacture, it is more expensive than cotton.

Recycled Cotton Fabric

Growing environmentally friendly fibre alone is insufficient when it comes to sustainable fashion. Instead, it's crucial to recycle and reuse the components that are already in use. One such smart move is reusing goods made of traditional cotton.

Cotton that has been recycled, also known as regenerated cotton, is taken out of products that would otherwise have ended up in landfills. There are two basic sources of recycled cotton. The first category consists of cotton fabrics that have been thrown away, while the second is fibre that has been used by consumers (cotton towels, clothing, etc.).

Many eco-friendly firms purchase leftover cotton from warehouses and utilise it to create gorgeous products. The favourable characteristics of virgin cotton, such as comfort, breathability, and durability, are retained in the recycled form. Additionally, recycling cotton uses a tiny amount of water during processing.

Organic Bamboo Fabric

 In the textile sector, organic bamboo is often referred to as bamboo linen. Without having to pull the plant out of the ground, bamboo can be picked from it, promoting rapid renewal. Its reputation as the fastest-growing plant on Earth is not undeserved.

The additional carbon dioxide that bamboo plants consume is another advantage of growing them. Additionally, the plant can survive just on rains and does not require any additional irrigation. As a result, depending on how it is handled, it has been referred to as one of the most sustainable fabrics.

Fabric made from bamboo that has been mechanically processed is said to be more environmentally and economically sustainable. Because organic bamboo cloth has antimicrobial properties, it can be used on skin types with sensitive or prone to allergies. It feels good against the skin since it is a natural insulator and highly absorbent.

However, the market is flooded with bamboo fabric variations blended with man-made fibres like rayon and viscose. These are not considered eco-friendly substitutes.

Environmental Benefits

● When cultivating organic cotton on farms, no chemical pesticides, herbicides, or other chemicals are utilised.

●Maintains and replenishes soil fertility.

●Organic food for humans and animals can be made from cotton that has been grown organically. As a result, organic cotton plays a crucial role in both the food and apparel chains.

● Growing organic cotton results in significantly lower CO2 emissions. Organic farming removes 1.5 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere per acre each year.

● Compared to conventional farming practises, organic cotton production uses up to 60% less water.

●There are no unintentional pesticide or herbicide residues in the environment.

●Creates a biodiverse agricultural environment.

●Chemical pesticides and herbicides are not used around people or animals.

● Pesticides and herbicides used on the fabric are not recycled or returned to the environment when it is discarded.

●Increases local farmer income and employment.


Eco-friendly Fashion

Ecological clothing is becoming more and more popular every day. Wearing clothing made with materials that were grown and processed using pesticides and synthetic colours is a major cause of skin problems and health risks.

The process used to make clothing has a significant influence on the environment. Employing organic materials is just one of the steps businesses may take to alter how consumers purchase clothing.

Organic fabrics, however, could not be sufficient as consumers and the general public become more conscious about sustainability and aware of the negative effects of utilising unsustainable materials and production techniques. With research being done into contemporary and more sophisticated eco-friendly materials, manufacturers should be considering their production and methods and figuring out how to incorporate more sustainable options into their collections.

Organic cotton is used to make a variety of clothes, including salwar-kameez, dupattas, skirts, short kurtis, t-shirts, and shirts, among others. Since the last few years, its consumption has increased. But in major metropolises like Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Calcutta, Bangalore, and Pune, its market share is higher. Numerous NGOs, farmer organisations, and designers have started raising awareness among the general public about the myriad negative impacts that cotton fabrics treated with chemicals have on our skin. Organizations like the Maharashtra Organic Farmers Association and the Vidarbha Organic Farmers Association, among others, provide assistance or actually cultivate such crops.

An open house event is planned for designers, farmers, merchants, researchers, and other key players in the production, processing, manufacturing, and distribution of organic apparel in order to promote the industry. Indians working in this area here interact with international visitors. They debate ways to improve the entire process, from product cultivation to retail sales, and they exchange ideas and points of view. Farmers need certification in organic farming before they can start their business. However, the primary obstacle to growing sales of organic fabrics is their expensive cost. It costs twice as much as regular cotton cloth.

Growing organic cotton is an expensive procedure that involves rotating the land. Furthermore, compared to crops cultivated with synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, the total amount of cotton produced through such a procedure yields a crop that is 14–20% smaller. Upper-middle class and high-class individuals are more likely to wear organic clothing. It is the newest trend in clothing. However, treating it as a trend would defeat the aim of ecological preservation; as a result, people should understand its advantages and wear it frequently. Demand growth would result in higher production, which would lower overall production costs.

Organic clothing is simple to keep clean and maintain. Despite having a small market share in India's clothing industry, the demand for organic apparel is rising at a rate of 30% annually, which is highly encouraging. Designers are attempting to improve the appeal, fashion, and affordability of these garments. In the future, after a few years, humans would be seen wearing fashionable attire made of organic cotton and materials.

Organic fabric is a good start for a better fashion business, but textiles like Pinatex and Kapok fibres may have a positive impact on how fashion brands design. Every fashion firm should place sustainability at the top of their list of priorities so that consumers can enjoy and consume fashion without contributing to the severe environmental damage that the existing sector is causing.

 List of brands using organic fabrics

Stella McCartney: Since the beginning of the brand, Stella McCartney has been an advocate for sustainable fashion. One of the brand's key selling points is their pledge to never use real leather or fur and their development of a vegan-friendly leather substitute. All of Stella McCartney's stores and offices are powered by wind energy and guarantee that 45% of operations are powered by 100% renewable energy in addition to using imitation leathers and other sustainable fabrics like recycled polyester.

Mara Hoffman: Mara Hoffman is renowned for using numerous recycled materials, as well as hemp and organic cotton, in the collection and has a strong commitment to sustainability. According to the Mara Hoffman website, the company also favours eco-friendly materials like ECONYL and REPREVE. In addition to branding with recycled paper and shipping swimsuits in compostable poly bags, Mara Hoffman worked hard to select more environmentally friendly manufacturing processes from solely Fair-Trade manufacturing facilities.

Eileen Fisher: When it comes to sourcing textiles and managing manufacturing, Eileen Fisher is well known for being enthusiastic about trying to reform the fashion business. This brand is committed to sustainability, from employing recycled materials and the only hazardous chemical-free dye house in the world to create bluesign-certified silk to forward-thinking programmes for fair trade and human rights.

Unmade: When it comes to technology-driven manufacturing, Unmade is really making a name for itself in the fashion industry. The company's entire brand philosophy is centred around "a better future for industrial production." The brand's guiding principle is that products aren't fully done until they are worn and that mass manufacturing, which produces enormous amounts of trash and garbage, isn't ideal for the environment or consumers. Their technology enables personalised customization on a user-friendly, uncomplicated platform.

Pact: Pact is dedicated to producing clothing that improves the world. The socially responsible business goes to great pains to make sure every step of its supply chain is as ethical and clean as possible, from the cultivation and harvesting of organic cotton through the final sewing of clothing. Additionally, Pact offers super-soft t-shirts, dresses, and underwear made of organic cotton that is pesticide-free for sale worldwide.

MATE the Label: MATE the Label exclusively use natural and harmless components while making their clothing, such as low-impact dyes, certified organic cotton, and Tencel, for everything from t-shirts and tanks to shorts and hoodies. Due to the factory's proximity to the company's headquarters (17 miles), all items are sewed, coloured, and shipped from Los Angeles, further reducing the company's carbon footprint. There is a recycling programme in place for used items, and the packaging is made entirely of recycled materials. MATE offers you cosy classics in vibrant yet inviting colours.

Staff Writer