1 green thing: Weird eco fabrics for ‘green fashion’

By Jan Herbert

Rockford Park District

Whether you were “green” before the color was fashionable or whether you’re just ready to find the “shade” that works best for you, here’s information about doing just “one green thing.”

These are a little weirder, but very interesting, as reported by Treehugger (online).

υ Chicken feathers—5 million tons of ag waste product are buried in landfills every year, but that could be a good deal less when chicken feathers are used to create a lightweight, yet resilient, fabric. The “chicken dance” takes on all new meaning!

υ Barkcloth—(Mutaba tree, Uganada) can be a variety of textures, depending on how it is prepared (sanctioned by UNESCO!).

υ Fishing nets—When swimsuits are made from this recycled nylon, 27 percent less petroleum resources are used and 28 percent less greenhouse gases than conventional fabrics.

υ Salmon skin—An often-overlooked resource, this “sea-leather” can be used in clothing, accessories and even furniture.

υ Stinging nettles—You may have even heard of this already. This fast-growing weed needs no pesticides and little fertilizer, so weaving it into fabric makes great sense. No, you will not break out from it … only the stems are used to make the fabric.

υ Soda bottles—These are not even that weird anymore. Plastic works well for suiting materials and even billowy special-occasion gowns when first ground into pellets, melted and then spun into thread.

For more information, e-mail Jan Herbert at JanHerbert@RockfordParkdistrict.org.

From the November 11-17, 2009 issue

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