Friday, April 11, 2014

Los Angeles Times article on hemp fashion

This is an old article, but worth posting today as hemp is gaining even more momentum - and legal status in the US - where the federal government has made it legal to grow in states where it is legal - this measure came after many months lobbying by Minawear with thousands of signers to her petition which is still in progress as we are looking to secure wider pro-hemp legislation - check it out and sign on at

Hemp, from hippie to hip

It’s not just for the stoner set. Stella McCartney, Giorgio Armani and Calvin Klein are among the designers incorporating hemp textiles into their fashions. It’s a versatile material said to be easy on the environment.

April 18, 2010|By Susan Carpenter, Los Angeles Times
It's durable. It's versatile. And when it's used in textiles, it's easier on the environment than, say, cotton. Yet its cannabis connection has slowed its widespread use. We're talking about hemp, and, by extension, hemp fashion — a concept that seems like an oxymoron but is quietly being embraced by the mainstream as major designers and clothing retailers take on the material that has long been equated with burlap and granola-munching hippies.

Stella McCartney, Giorgio Armani and Calvin Klein are among the designers who've seen through the smoke and incorporated hemp textiles into their lines. And Whole Foods, Urban Outfitters, American Rag and Fred Segal are some of the better-known stores selling fashion-forward hemp brands, such as Livity Outernational, Jung Maven, Satori and Hemp Hoodlamb, all of which exploit hemp's various attributes in chic items that run the gamut from technical outerwear to dresses that would hardly be the first choice of the dreadlocks-and-doobie crowd.
"Hemp clothing has definitely come a long way," says Al Espino, the owner of two hemp clothing boutiques called Hempwise in Santa Barbara and Isla Vista. "Ten years ago, a lot of the hemp clothing played on the connection with marijuana with labels saying ‘contains marijuana fabric.' There was a lot of confusion and I think it held back the industry. Now there are a lot of small [fashion-forward] companies. It's gone from a niche market with an illegal drug connection to appealing to the organic and natural crowd."
Hemp is an industrial, nonpsychoactive plant that is part of the cannabis family; the fibers are different and stronger than a marijuana plant, making it suitable for textiles.
What's drawing designers to hemp textiles are their natural performance attributes and their low impact on the environment. Hemp fibers are highly absorbent, UV resistant, antimicrobial and long lasting. Growing it also requires less water and fewer pesticides than does cotton. Growing hemp in the U.S. has been prohibited since the '50s, so most of the hemp used by American clothing designers comes from China. "It's so high value and so much lower impact in every other way that it eclipses the carbon generated through shipping," said Isaac Nichelson, founder of the Santa Monica-based hemp clothing line Livity Outernational.
Eco-chic is a rising tide in the fashion world, and the use of hemp is swelling — aided by technological advances that have produced appealing and increasingly refined hemp textile blends, the most common being hemp and organic cotton and hemp fibers woven with recycled plastic, both of which soften a material that can be coarse.
Still, hemp's illicit image is hard to shed. Two teenage girls read the sign for Hempwise and giggled before walking into the shop on a recent weekday to peruse the women's section, which is stocked with slinky hemp-blend T-shirts and Capri pants, and asymmetrical mini-dresses. All of it was set out in displays that play up the "eco" with only the merest hint of "Rasta." A mint green Vespa was parked inside the doorway on bamboo flooring that led to displays of backpacks and wallets, hats and menswear — all made from hemp.
One of the brands sold at Hempwire is Livity, which Nichelson started after a friend pointed out that the materials he was using as a clothing designer weren't in sync with his environmental beliefs.

"I was using nylon, PVC, Teflon — every toxin known to man wrapped up in a garment that we were putting on ourselves and dropping in a landfill later," said Nichelson, who started to look for alternatives and found one in hemp. Eight years later, he's running a multimillion-dollar business that sells outdoor-wear to Whole Foods and Urban Outfitters. On Thursday — Earth Day — he'll be opening his first branded store on Lincoln Boulevard in Santa Monica, so strong is his belief that hemp is "headed straight to the mainstream. Eventually it won't even be perceptible. Hemp is as high performance and functional and as cool and flashy and sexy as any conventional product, but it doesn't impact the planet in terrible ways. More and more, it's going to be incorporated into things where the end user doesn't even know or care it's there. They're just reaping the benefits."

Monday, April 07, 2014

Book Review on Hempista

Here's the latest review of Hemp for Victory - from

Hemp For Victory – published in 2006 by Kenyon Gibson, Nick and Cindy Mackintosh, Woody Harrelson, Mina Hegaard and Sam Heslop. $29.95 at MinaWear!
When my friend Mina at MinaWear told me she was sending me one of the most amazing and authoritative books ever published about hemp to review for my readers here at Hempista, I was totally thrilled to have the opportunity to share this book with you today!
Hemp For Victory is a 280 page volume of history, science and uses of the hemp plant and is an encyclopedic treasure trove of information about the plant. The book has hundreds of black & white reproductions of historical images and documents dating back to when hemp was part of everyday life. Yes, sometime before the drug war was invented in the 20th century, hemp was just a plant! But, it was a special plant that had an important role in ancient and pre-20th century society for food, fiber and medicinal purposes.
This book is what I would call the ultimate educational volume and almanac of hemp. And I would highly recommend this for educators and teachers that are seeking unique and relevant material for Earth Day educational units. Students often hear about “marijuana” from their DARE lectures and sessions which typically paint the cannabis plant in a negative light, completely ignoring the environmental and health advantages of the hemp plant. Hemp For Victory is a great resource for Earth Day.

Friday, March 07, 2014

Kinky Friedman wins Democratic party runoff for Texas State Agricultural Commissioner

Richard “Kinky” Friedman, a humorist and country music singer, got one step closer Tuesday to adding another line to his résumé: agriculture commissioner of Texas.
It’s highly unlikely that the colorful candidate will go on to win a statewide position in deep-red Texas, but Friedman did make the Democratic primary runoff for the position.
He’ll compete against cattle farmer Jim Hogan in that May 27 contest, but a Republican is heavily favored to win the general election.
Friedman has run for office in the Lone Star State several times before, including for the same position in 2010. Then he also made the cut for a runoff before losing the ultimate battle for the nomination.

  [photo is Kinky with Mina Hegaard of Minawear]
Read more:



Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Kinky Friedman Texas hemp boys (and girls)

View Kinky Freidman.jpg in slide show

Above is a picture of Kinky Friedman, with Mina Hegaard - both Texas hemp advocates, both are well known and need little introduction in the hemp world.
Kinky is running for Texas Agricultural Commissioner, while Mina runs Minawear Hemp Clothing
based in Victoria, but soon to move to Austin, Texas.

The election will be in November. If Kinky gets in,  chads will be made of hemp paper and farmers will be making money in America and using less water and little or no pesticides.

Lots of news in the US about hemp lately, so much so that the federal government has made it legal for people to grow it if is legal at the state level - so once Texas gets a sensible law passed it will be able to stop the dependency on water hungry cotton and corn and grow hemp.  Hopefully there can be emergency expedition of such a law so that it can be passed as soon as the Texas legislature sits.

For this to be, there needs to be public support of such a move - the federal government passed the hemp legislation only after much outcry - some of it coming from Texas in the form of the Minawear petition, still up at

There will be a new petition soon to make hemp legal at the state level and also to expedite this legislation for 2014.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Clear drying, good tasting Ukranian hemp oil

These are images of Ukranian hemp oil I came across at Netcost in Brooklyn. Not only does it taste good, but it dries completely clear, I tested it against another hemp oil and linseed oil on 25 November 2013. I will be trying to get information on the variety of seed used with a view to making it available to artists to use.

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Hemp made legal by US Feds

press release
Feb. 3, 2014, 10:58 a.m. EST

Victory for Hemp Farmers as U.S. House of Representatives Legalizes the Cultivation of Hemp

LAS VEGAS, Feb 03, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE via COMTEX) -- Hemp, Inc., /quotes/zigman/11676296/delayed/quotes/nls/hempHEMP+14.64% America's first all-industrial hemp public company, applauds the U.S. House of Representatives for legalizing the cultivation of hemp. For the first time in decades, the Federal government is allowing farmers to cultivate hemp. As of Wednesday, January 29, 2014, pursuant to the passage of the farm bill, the cultivation of industrial hemp is legal on a Federal level and is clearing the way for industrial hemp pilot programs in states such as Colorado, Washington, California, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont and West Virginia, where growing the plant is legal.
The bill was originally introduced as an amendment by Representatives Jared Polis (D-CO), Thomas Massie (R-KY) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR). The provision allows universities, and now also state departments of agriculture, to grow hemp for academic or agricultural research purposes; however, it only applies to states where industrial hemp farming is already legal under state law.
Senator Mitch McConnell, who worked to retain and strengthen the provision, was the lead negotiator in getting hemp included on the Farm Bill was quoted, "We are laying the groundwork for a new commodity market for Kentucky farmers."
Bruce Perlowin, CEO of Hemp, Inc. said, "I said it before and I'll say it again... these are monumental steps for the industry. What we are all trying to get people to understand is that this will finally unlock a clean 'American Industrial Revolution' that will not only be economically sound, but environmentally advantageous." Soon companies like Hemp, Inc. /quotes/zigman/11676296/delayed/quotes/nls/hempHEMP+14.64% will not have to import their hemp fabrics, hemp seeds, hemp hearts and hemp hurd for their hemp products.
According to the Associated Press article, written by Kristen Wyatt, "The plant's return to legitimacy could clear the way for U.S. farmers to compete in an industry currently dominated by China. Even though it hasn't been grown in the U.S., the country is one of the fastest-growing hemp markets.
"In 2011, the U.S. imported $11.5 million worth of legal hemp products, up from $1.4 million in 2000. Most of that growth was seen in hemp seed and hemp oil, which finds its way into granola bars and other products." Other estimates place the U.S. 2013 hemp sales at half a billion dollars ($500 million).
Hemp has thousands of uses. From rope and clothing, to soap and lotions and nutritional additives in everything from milk to cooking oil. Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew hemp before the Federal government banned the plant in its anti-drug efforts through the 1970 Controlled Substances Act. According to the aforementioned article, it wasn't until 1999 that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued a hemp permit for an experimental plot in Hawaii on a quarter acre of land.
Now the passing of the farm bill is a big first step towards allowing American farmers to once again grow industrial hemp, and giving Hemp, Inc. enormous new economic opportunities.
Hemp, Inc. /quotes/zigman/11676296/delayed/quotes/nls/hempHEMP+14.64% seeks to benefit many constituencies, not exploit or endanger any group of them. Thus, the publicly-traded company believes in "upstreaming" of a portion of profit from the marketing of their finished hemp goods back to its originator. By Hemp, Inc. focusing on comprehensive investment results--that is, with respect to performance along the interrelated dimensions of people, planet, and profits-- our triple bottom line approach can be an important tool to support sustainability goals.
This press release may contain certain forward-looking statements and information, as defined within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and is subject to the Safe Harbor created by those sections. This material contains statements about expected future events and/or financial results that are forward-looking in nature and subject to risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements by definition involve risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Hemp, Inc. to be materially different from the statements made herein.   (petition to the White House/hemp clothing)                            (hemp-based supplements division) (hemp protein with enhanced nutritionals) (MJ Lover for Him; MJ Lover for Her) (hemp-based nutraceuticals) (media and entertainment division) (eco-friendly clothing) (loyalty card sustainable fundraiser for non-profits) (hemp gemstone candles and fundraiser for patch adams)

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Minawear at Los Angeles Green Festival

View Tie Dye Tunics.jpg in slide show

This coming weekend Minawear will be at the Los Angeles Green Festival, so check them out in Booth 436. Hand-dyed hemp shirts are but one of many sartorial offerings.