Friday, July 14, 2006
HEMPCLOTH AND ASHES
The fashion industry today makes use of two primary fibres, silk and cotton. The former kills lots of silk worms, the latter lots of people. But who cares when you're making lots of money for some super-cool corporation with pouty catwalk models into cocaine? I mean, get a life, maybe take someone else's.
However, fashionistas are not all wimpy, self-centred idiots who have no clue about the fact that the planet is being made unsuitable for human habitation by indulgent whingers. There is a growing number of entrepeneurs who have decided to work for a better world. Organic cotton companies (although this does not solve the water use problem), bamboo fabric outfits and even some nettle manufacturers have gotten into the act. And of course there is hemp, which has been used for millenia and for which there are many more uses than just fabric.
In the US, Minawear, based in Santa Monica, California, has been spinning its natural fibres into clothing for seven years now, supplying the environmentally conscious with threads for all occasions, whilst in the UK, The Hemp Trading Co. (THTC) has been doing the same. Both have had to work against all odds for this to work, including the ignorant remarks from journalists who pass all hemp clothing off as 'sackcloth'. Not surprisingly, there are to be found large ads from cotton companies in the national newspapers, but hemp companies have a smaller budget.
However, public awareness is growing, and now a number of shops selling hemp clothes are to be found in the UK and the US, of which a small list includes: