Not So Trash Talk - Sustainable Fabrications
Here at THRILLS, we are constantly on the look-out for new and progressive fabrics to help lessen our footprint. If you've been following us for a while, you know we're currently using an array of environmentally friendly fabrics such as Hemp, the lesser known Ramie, as well as Linen and Recycled Fabrics. As a whole, we are pushing to use Recycled Fabrics wherever possible. These can be produced by regenerating the fibre from old garments or discarded offcuts. Another initiative is to reuse waste fishing line and ropes salvaged from the ocean to create the nylon required for swimwear - better for you and better for the environment!
But there's one issue that has been close to our hearts since the start of our Sustainable Future movement and we can't wait to tell you all about it. For the past two years, we've been working tirelessly behind the scenes to swap the majority of our denim program to Organic Cotton! During the process, we started moving as much of our regular cotton products to Organic Cotton we and will continue to do so.
But let's be honest, it can all get a bit confusing - why a certain fabric is deemed better than another one and how it actually affects the environment. Keep on reading below to dive into the nitty-gritty details of our favourite environmentally friendly fabrications.
In 2018, we have made the decision to take a stand against chemically intensive cotton and switch to organically grown cotton in as many styles as we can. Organic Cotton vastly reduces the use of chemicals that can be carcinogenic and environmentally damaging - a win-win situation for you and the environment.
And sometimes changing processes is as simple as asking and being persistent! We reached out to all of our friends who manage our manufacturing and asked if it was possible to switch to Organic Cotton, especially for our denim. We were really excited to hear that it was possible to alter the yarn supply with very little change to the look or feel of our signature denim styles. The environmental advantages far outweighed the extra cost that we are happy to pay and two years later, we can finally introduce you to our new Organic Cotton Denim styles.
BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: Our Ecocert certified Organic Cotton is grown without the use of carcinogenic chemical fertilisers, pesticides, and insecticides, therefore helping to improve the quality of the land, prevent water contamination, and conserve biodiversity - these are huge positive advantages for our environment and the health of farm families. Organic farming uses a combination of traditional and modern scientific practices to grow crops in a way that develops healthy, fertile soil, conserves biodiversity and protects natural resources by farming where water is more likely to be derived from rainfall rather than surface or groundwater irrigation. Itʼs vitally important for everyone in our industry to help raise the percentage of Organic Cotton use above traditional destructive cotton production.
BETTER FOR YOU: Organic Cotton benefits your health too as there are no chemical retentions in Organic Cotton clothing. This ensures that people with allergies or with specific chemical sensitivity will greatly benefit from wearing organic cotton. Additionally, as a consumer of Organic Cotton, you will be promoting the importance of ethical production and help Organic Cotton farms grow. The more demand there is for Organic Cotton, the stronger we can work towards ensuring that non-organic cotton may no longer be required within the fashion industry.
We currently use Hemp in many of our garments because it is the true rock star of environmentally sustainable fabrics. Hemp uses no synthetic pesticides or herbicides and requires no fertiliser as it is self-mulching and regenerates the soil naturally. Hemp, just like our Organic Cotton, also requires little to no irrigation which = huge water savings and a huge step towards saving the planet! Raw Hemp cam be slightly rough, so when milling the fabric for our t-shirt jersey fabric we blend it with Organic Cotton to keep them soft and wearable. Woven hemp for shirting, pants, dresses, playsuits and other styles is milled quite thoroughly to keep it durable and strong but still soft and amazing to wear - we are excited to see where our Hemp adventure will lead us.
BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: Hemp can be grown to full height in about 90 days (cotton is about 6 months!) and there is no need for toxic pesticides or insecticides, it is naturally resistant to disease and repels weeds. In most areas there is no need for irrigation. The leaves and flower heads can be left to naturally fertilise the soil and the farming itself can be profitable for smaller local communities with the land use being regenerating (post livestock or unsustainable crops).
Hemp is grown without the use of carcinogenic chemical fertilisers, pesticides, and insecticides, therefore helping to improve the quality of the land, prevent water contamination, and conserve biodiversity - these are huge positive advantages for our environment and the health of farm families.
Politically Hemp is also a really positive statement against the devastating chemical industries as well as an amazing diversion for poorer countries to rebuild profitable industry.
BETTER FOR YOU: Hemp garments are amazing to wear, the fabric is soft and drapes really well, and does not hold sweat or odour. Hemp benefits your health too as there are no chemical retentions in the fabric against your skin. When you purchase Hemp you will be promoting ethical production and helping an industry rebuild with stronger ethics and way more sustainable practice.
Linen is one of our sustainable focus fabrics, made from the flax plant, it is biodegradable, strong and breathable, anti- bacterial and beautiful.
BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: Using less water than cotton to grow, the flax plant is not only pest resistant, but one of the oldest known fibres to mankind! Because it's a natural fibre, flax linen is recyclable and biodegrade. The whole flax plant can be used, leaving no waste. Linen is an extremely strong fibre so the garments will last a very long time - this is often overlooked but longevity is actually one of the most sustainable attributes to a garment and we wish to support and promote this. Linen clothes will not lose their shape after washing, if anything, they will become softer and more pleasant to the skin over time.
BETTER FOR YOU: Linen is highly breathable and allows air to move around you freely - this releases moisture build up which in turn reduces any perspiration. Fun fact, this will actually further prevent your allergies acting up too!
Ramie has been used for over five thousand years in China, India, and Indonesia - making it older than cotton! It is the lesser known gem of sustainable fabrics using very little water, fertilisers, or pesticides.
BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: Extremely breathable and one of the softer and more comfortable fabrics to wear, it is also one of the strongest natural fibres and possesses many qualities of cotton and linen. It does not cause skin allergies, is resistant to bacteria and mold and has thermo regulating properties - making Ramie a highly sustainable eco-friendly fibre. The ramie plant is a hardy plant that can grow all year round, can be harvested up to 6 times a year, produces consistent raw material and has a crop life from 6 to 20 years. Ramie is a perfectly sustainable raw material for us to use.
BETTER FOR YOU: Ramie fabric is light and breathable, making it the ideal fibre to use in comfortable clothing for warm and humid summers. It is a highly sustainable fibre source which makes it a wonderful eco-friendly alternative to synthetic fibres and as a wearer you can sleep easy knowing your clothing choice has made a positive impact on the earth.
See our Womens Ramie Collection.
Our new Recycled Cotton tote bags are made from the normally waste areas from a garment cutting table. These remnants were usually used for stuffing teddy bears but sadly synthetics took away the ability to use the waste.
BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT: We are very excited that our factories have the initiative to up-cycle and regenerate the raw materials for us into these beautiful fabrics. They are by nature slightly irregular due to the different fabrics recycled making them even more special to us. Up-cycling is the far more positive alternative for the environment than recycling because the waste comes back into the world as a more valuable and longer lasting item - this is a sustainable theory we we absolutely love and want to do more of! We will be working to try and include more recycled cotton products in the near future and aim to adapt this approach to other garments as well as our accessories.
BETTER FOR YOU: We have all been recycling home waste for a long time now and the next step is purchasing as many items as possible that are produced from recycled raw materials.
See our Recycled Cotton Collection.
A closing word: Keep in mind that all natural fabrics are biodegradable too! The time is now and any impact large or small that we can have on climate change is a massive win for the planet and for us.