Tuesday, 16 October 2012

More Organic Cotton

This is my third post about organic cotton. Perhaps I've persuaded you to give organic cotton a try, but you are mainly a dressmaker, not a quilter - don't worry, there's plenty of  organic fabric available for you too!
One of the best places in the UK to buy organic fabrics (other than quilting cottons)  is Organic Textile Company run by a very friendly couple Phil and Ann Wheeler. In their online store you can buy organic denim, corduroy, jersey, flannel, fleece and thread to sew with as well.
For £3.95 they will send you a sample pack, which I thoroughly recommend. It's only when you feel the fabrics in your hand and see the colours with your own eyes that you can be really sure of what you want.
I particularly like their handloom cotton. This is shirt weight fabric and is made in people's homes from yarn that has already been dyed. It is certified Fairtrade and the weavers make about 3 - 5 metres a day - yes, that's right! all hand woven on a loom. It takes some thinking about, doesn't it.
Many people decide they want to explore using organic fabrics when they are sewing for a new baby. You might wish to read my earlier post on the health problems that traditional cotton can cause.
Cloth nappies (diapers for US readers) can quickly and easily be made from organic terry towelling.
You can either use cotton towelling or bamboo towelling. Bamboo is naturally organic - no chemicals are needed for its production. Bamboo is anti bacterial, a property it is able to retain through many washes. It helps reduce odour - what could be better for nappies! It is also thermo-regulating. That means it keeps  you cool in summer and warm in winter. Bamboo towelling dries quicker than cotton.
In the UK bamboo towelling and blended bamboo/organic cotton towelling can be bought at Ecoearth Fabrics along with other organic fabrics. They have a great range of fabrics to choose from, but I have found delivery to be rather expensive and a little slow.
My next and final post in this organic series will look at organic knitting yarns.
In the meantime, enjoy your knitting and sewing - whatever type of cotton you are using!

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