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Peak textiles - Oct 7

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Woody Harrelson's view of hemp farming: strong fibres, and cuts pesticides

Jo Adetunji, The Guardian
I've believed in hemp for a long time, since I read The Emperor Wears no Clothes by Jack Herer, who was a driving force in the hemp movement. I read the book in the mid-1990s and I read it as one of those environmentalists who saw hemp as this sustainable crop.

The Marijuana Tax Act in 1937 was the beginning of the demise of hemp growing in the US. There was a resurgence in the second world war when the government made Hemp for Victory, a film to encourage farmers to grow hemp because it was useful for sails, clothes, things like that. It's really good fabric, it has really strong fibres. Cotton is responsible for 50% of all pesticide use in the US. The whole point is to stay away from all these pesticides...
(25 September 2008)




From Recycled Scraps To Museum-Quality Quilts

Sandy Bauers, The Philadelphia Inquirer
Nettie Young, jaw set, a pink scarf over her hair, pauses to compose herself as she remembers.

"When I was growing up, you didn't have nothing to throw away. No waste food, no waste clothes, no waste nothing."

It was like that for everyone in Gee's Bend, a rural community in central Alabama south of Selma. So they made do. And they made quilts...

...In 2006, the average American generated 4.6 pounds of trash a day, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency...We're recycling more, to be sure, but one reason the waste stream keeps building is that we're buying more. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, retail sales went from $1.3 trillion in 1992 to $2.9 trillion in 2006...

...An example of what can happen, big-scale, is the clothing Swap-O-Rama-Ramas started by New Mexico's Wendy Tremayne because she "wanted to find a remedy for consumerism."..
(6 October 2008)



Make Your Own Homemade Natural Dyes

Elizabeth Seward, Planet Green
Sometimes all that a piece of clothing needs in order to gain some new life is a new color. Not contributing to waste with disposed clothing can really be as simple as dying your clothes a color that you love. Dyes, however, can be very unsafe. Some of them have so many chemicals in them that you would never want to have them on your skin all day long. But dyes don't have to be so toxic. In fact, long ago, dyes were all made from natural things, like plants, for instance. With the eco-friendly movement picking up momentum, more and more people are realizing that they can actually make their own dyes...and you can, too!

See original for some recipes
(19 September 2008)

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