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New, Modern Fabrics...Can We Quilt With Them?

New, Modern Fabrics...Can We Quilt With Them?

Old 09-01-2020, 05:48 AM
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Default New, Modern Fabrics...Can We Quilt With Them?

I was reading an article about the newest, eco-friendly fabrics this morning. One is made of algae and can actually trap carbon, others are completely bio-degradable, (unlike most of our fashion and upholstery fabrics we use today.) There is, "leather," made out of cactus and, "wool," made out of pineapple leaves. Bamboo has been around awhile. So has hemp. But they all have serious, processing problems. Cotton, although a plant-based material, also has a large footprint of carbon dioxide, much of that is given off during the energy-intensive production and dyeing processes.

So, where does that leave the quilter? Will there be better, safer fabrics for us in the future?

~ C
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Old 09-01-2020, 06:06 AM
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I'm really wanting to work with Hemp right now, there are certainly quilting weight fabrics out there.

What has held me back is the ability to touch the fabric, to feel the weave, do my crumple tests and such. I did look at importing a commercial size quantity about 10 years ago, I think I had to have roughly half a container and decided not to go into business and that I don't have the storage. There are swatch sets I can buy but that doesn't maybe tell me enough. I'd be happy to make a number of tops just to see how they hold up.
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Old 09-01-2020, 07:05 AM
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I love the idea of the one that can trap carbon! Not sure about a biodegradable fabric for quilting- I'd want to know how long before it starts to break down, etc. I'm thinking that there will be some interesting new materials for us to work with in the future.

I'm curious about how recycling fabrics works. Years ago people would send their worn out fabrics to rag-pickers and I know that there are still some places that will accept cotton fabrics for recycling. Is that a viable solution in terms of carbon footprint, etc.?

Rob
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Old 09-01-2020, 07:40 AM
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Not true about these new natural fibers being good for the environment. The processing may save some carbon but is very bad for the environment. That's why not much praise is made over bamboo as it use to be, many manufactures have stopped using it because of the environmental problems caused by the chemicals used to process the 'natural' fiber.
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Old 09-01-2020, 08:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Onebyone View Post
Not true about these new natural fibers being good for the environment. The processing may save some carbon but is very bad for the environment. That's why not much praise is made over bamboo as it use to be, many manufactures have stopped using it because of the environmental problems caused by the chemicals used to process the 'natural' fiber.
Right, I agree, but I'm thankful for the people that continue to search for solutions. I've used hemp before and I love the fabrics made from it. It's tough and long lasting. I don't know what effect the processing of it has on the world, but it is a very cool fabric to work with. I made my daughter's wedding dress out of a hemp-silk blend and it was beautiful. I would think that there are now more hemp options out there now.

~ C
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Old 09-01-2020, 09:39 AM
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I can't think of anything safer or more comfortable than cotton.
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Old 09-01-2020, 03:55 PM
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I know cotton uses a lot of pesticides in the growing....I think one of the best things we can do, is to really take care of what we have.....I was freaking out when I found a label on the sewing cabinet that stated "made with rain Forrest wood"....I just felt so guilty and was trying to figure out what to do with it....I finally decided to take really good care of it and to honor the life of the tree it had came from. I ended up giving it to a friend of mine who really needed a cabinet and who I know will take good care of it...check before you buy.
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Old 09-01-2020, 04:05 PM
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I was freaking out when I found a label on the sewing cabinet that stated "made with rain Forrest wood"....I just felt so guilty and was trying to figure out what to do with it


No need to freak out about items made from rain forest wood. It isn't cut for the purpose of manufacturing. The rain forest is being clear cut very fast and the wood is burned if someone doesn't save it to build and use it. It's sad but the people clear cut to grow crops but the ground does not have enough dirt to grow crops after one year so they keep clear cutting to grow for the next year.. I have seen many documentaries about this and nothing can be done as the government there says it's okay.


Last edited by Onebyone; 09-01-2020 at 04:09 PM.
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Old 09-02-2020, 12:03 AM
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I'm wondering why anyone would want to sleep under a quilt that absorbs lots of carbon. At least the chemicals used to process cotton will wash out. Just my opinion
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Old 09-02-2020, 12:35 AM
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Hmmm, I'm just sticking with quilt shop fabric for now. This is the first I've heard of this.
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