Ways in which companies are responding to the need for more eco-friendly and sustainable products
Resources From The Animal Kingdom
Responsibly sourced options from our feathered and furred friends continue to add to the stable of eco-friendly products that offer luxurious comfort and softness.
From Pendleton Woolen Mills (below), Eco-Wise Wool® washable blankets are made in the U.S. with renewable virgin wool that is certified to pass strict standards of sustainability and stewardship. The machine washable blankets have whipstitch binding and are offered in 66- by 96-inch twin, 90- by 96-inch queen and 108- by 96-inch king sizes. Solid and plaid options include: shale blue, blush/gray plaid, white, Oxford plaid, fawn heather, ivory/Waverly plaid, red, Oxford Waverly plaid and charcoal mix.
From Downlite (below), the Dream Naturally Collection features pillows and comforters made with 300-thread-count organic cotton and filled with Wood Down Halo™, a blend of 70 percent down and 30 percent Merino wool.
From Johanna Howard Home and Accessories (below), the Dip Dyed Throw is made with 100 percent baby alpaca and measures 51 by 74 inches. The hand-dyed throw is offered in a range of colors; the two newest additions are rich emerald (shown) and deep plum.
What Goes Around Comes Around: Recycling Plastic
Options in products made with recycled plastic bottles, rescuing them from landfills for a bit longer, are on the rise due to technologies that transform the material into fibers that offer characteristics such as durability, strength, softness and easy care.
From Company C (below), the Daybreak indoor/outdoor rug appears to radiate subtle changes in color from the center out. Woven by hand with 100 percent polyester yarns crafted from recycled plastic bottles, the design is easy care and reversible. Finished with a 1-inch fringe, Daybreak is offered in four colorways.
From Karastan (below), the Meraki Collection of area rugs are made with the company’s exclusive premium EverStrand™ fibers that are created using the highest-grade plastic from recycled beverage bottles. The polyester offers strong color clarity, colorfastness and permanent stain resistance. Shown is the Solace design in multi. Designs in the collection are globally inspired bohemian, traditional patterns rendered in vibrant color combinations with distressed details.
Utilizing A World Of Cotton
Natural and organic cotton is grown worldwide in countries that include the U.S., India, Egypt, Brazil and Spain. Cotton is arguably the most widely used natural material in the home textiles field.
From Sustainable Threads (below), the hand block-printed natural cotton napkins in the Vogue design come in a set of four. Measuring 14 by 20 inches, each napkin is hand-stamped with a geometric pattern on Kora (unbleached) cotton. The hand-carved wood blocks are dipped in low-impact dyes. The napkins are “fair trade” made by a women’s self-help group in western India.
From Trident (below), the Good To Nature Collection includes towels and sheeting. The soft towels are made with 100 percent organic cotton and no added dyes or chemicals. The unbleached, undyed sheet set is made with 100 percent cotton for a clean sleeping experience.
From Riviera Home USA (below), Organic Cotton Bath Rugs are offered in a variety of neutral colors.
From Veritas (below), the Soft Lightweight Towel is made with 100 percent organic cotton grown in the Aegean region of Turkey. Unaffected by harmful chemical treatments, the organic cotton is ecologically healthy. Thanks to the towel’s construction, not only is energy consumption minimized and optimized during its production, but the towels will need less water to wash and less time to dry than other types of towels. The towels are available in several designs, colors and sizes.
From Linum Home Textiles (below), the jacquard, double-weave Sea Breeze pestemal beach towel is made in Turkey with 100 percent Turkish cotton. The versatile, lightweight towel has high water absorption, measures 35 by 70 inches and is available in sky blue, turquoise, navy, pink, orange and gray.
Verifying Authenticity & Adhering To Standards
More and more companies are seeking verification for products as eco-friendly by meeting recognized, established standards, such as the Global Organic Textile Standard, and undergoing certification processes from OEKO-TEX®. The Better Cotton Initiative aims to transform cotton production worldwide by developing Better Cotton as a sustainable mainstream commodity. The Better Cotton Standard covers three pillars of sustainability: environmental, social and economic. In recent years, technology has enabled the tagging and tracking of source materials to insure authenticity along supply and distribution channels.
From Syona Home (below), the Avani Sheet Set Collection is named after the Sanskrit word meaning “earth” and is made with soft 100 percent organic cotton. Ethically made from 100 percent GOTS certified cotton and eco-friendly dyes in a Fair Trade Certified factory, the 300-thead-count sheets are created with sateen weave and an elegant picot stitch design.
From Ibena (below), available in the U.S. through Stellar Alliance, 100 percent cotton blankets and throws are woven in Germany with GOTS-certified organic cotton. The products also meet strict local and international environmental standards, including the protocols needed to be certified as Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX. These Ibena blankets and throws can be custom designed.
From GHCL (below), the Nile Harvest line features products made with authentic Egyptian cotton that has established provenance and traceability from gin to store through IntegriTEX® from Tailorlux Gmbh. The bedding is comfortable, luxurious, soft, lightweight and durable.
(below) From Royal River Trading, Cuddledown’s 300-thread-count Organic Cotton Percale sheeting is woven with 100 percent organic combed cotton, and is tested for harmful substances and certified safe to the Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX. Imported from Portugal, the collection includes flat sheets, 16-inch deep fitted sheets, and pillowcases. The flat sheets and pillowcases feature hemstitch detailing. Colors available are white, ivory, angelite, blush and lilac.
Promoting Health & Wellness
The movement toward maintaining health through preventive measures has grown in the past few years. Nutrition practices that focus on benefit-laden produce and skin care products that leave out harmful chemicals are complemented by options in home textiles that aid sleep and rejuvenation, and that eliminate odors and bacteria growth.
From Micro Cotton (below), the Wellness line presents bath linens treated with natural elements designed to provide unique benefits while also being created with the brand’s eco-friendly practices. Wellness Refresh towels (shown) have purifying properties and are naturally odor resistant from yarns infused with natural charcoal particles, while special hollow pore yarns enhance absorbency. Wellness Ayush towels are treated with the traditional Ayurvedic ingredient neem extract for odor control. The naturally anti-microbial properties of charcoal and neem provide an eco-friendly alternative to chemical-based finishes. Wellness Rejuvenate towels incorporate aloe vera via a proprietary encapsulation on long-staple cotton to offer skin-soothing comfort. The treatments last for 50 or more washes.
From GHCL (below), the Meditasi Collection aims to help consumers “sleep and heal.” Health and wellness benefits come from specific sustainable fibers, special infused yarns, and select weaves and finishes. Shown is bedding from the Derma-Gloss range made with 80 percent Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) cotton, 20 percent cupro and aloe vera. Cupro is a sustainable fiber made with cotton seeds that is unlikely to cause allergies and offers a smooth, silky feel. The aloe vera nourishes skin to prevent aging and to help rejuvenate cells.
Benefitting From Blending Fibers
Many products include mixes of eco-friendly materials that result in final products offering a variety of benefits—from good pricing and durability, to a soft hand and comfort against the skin.
From GHCL (below), the Cirkularity bedding line centers on the circular economy concept of “reduce, reuse and recycle.” Shown from the range is Sativa Collection bedding made with 70 percent Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) cotton and 30 percent hemp.
(below) Welspun offers towels made with Lenzing’s REFIBRA™ technology that involves upcycling a substantial proportion of cotton scraps along with wood pulp to produce TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers. This closed loop production process is Lenzing’s first step to contribute to the circular economy in textiles.
From WestPoint Home (below), the EcoPure™ Pure + Simple Collection includes a comforter, bed pillows and mattress pad made with 100 percent organic cotton fabric. The pillow and comforter are filled with EcoPure™ Dreamsoft recycled polyester made from repurposed plastic bottles.
Corporate Responsibility Influences Manufacturing Technologies
Producing eco-friendly products requires a great deal of foresight, investment and corporate commitment. Many companies opted to go down the environment friendly path long before the movement gained momentum and many more are taking steps today to adopt “clean” and sustainable processes and practices.
Here are a few examples:
• Trident factories in the Madhya Pradesh location in India are 100 percent Zero Discharge facilities, including recycling of all water used in fabric processing. Factories in the Punjab state in India are recycling and reusing 25 percent of discharge through multi-stage reverse osmosis technology, with plans to achieve 100 percent Zero Discharge factory status within three years. All of the company’s factories are OEKO-TEX certified for products by adopting sustainable ways of manufacturing.
• At the Riviera Home facilities, 25 percent of electricity is generated through renewable energy sources, including solar panels and windmills. Additionally, through Zero Discharge technology, used water is cleaned and 70 percent is reused. One of Riviera’s facilities is certified Made in Green by OKEO-TEX, an independent textile label for highlighting consumer and semi-finished products made from materials tested for harmful substances and manufactured using environmentally friendly processes under safe and socially responsible working conditions.
• Lenzing has been known for decades for eco-friendly production of plant-based fibers. In 2016, REFIBRA™ technology was introduced for Lyocell fibers that incorporate scraps left over from the production of cotton clothing as the base materials. In 2017, the company launched the TENCEL™ Luxe filament yarn for the fashion industry that is based on environment-friendly Lyocell technology. In January 2019, the Lenzing Group was once again rated the number one producer of wood-based fibers (out of 31 globally) in the world with respect to the responsible procurement of wood, the key raw material in cellulose fiber production. This rating comes from the “Hot Button Report” published by the Canadian environmental organization, Canopy.
• Wülfing has been certified as a Standard 100 by OEKO-TEX supplier of German flannel for more than 20 years. It is also now certified as Made in Green by OEKO-TEX. Wülfing print flannels use the Total Paste Recovery System, in which pigments are re-used with no waste. Wülfing saves water through the DEXTOX by Green Peace program and uses its own solar power system to provide 80 percent of energy. Two years ago, Wülfing began a WECYCLED program, a no-waste model for cotton processing, that uses its own unused raw materials to make new yarns.
• Better Cotton Initiative, +41 22 93 91 250, bettercotton.org
• Company C, 844-242-6567, companyc.com
• Downlite International, 800-543-3696, downlite.com
• GHCL Limited, +91 120 2535113, ghcl.co.in
• Ibena through Stellar Alliance, 212-563-6305
• Johanna Howard Home and Accessories, 973-866-5522, johannahoward.com
• Karastan, 800-845-8877, karastan.com
• Lenzing, 212-944-7898, lenzing.com
• LINUM HOME TEXTILES, 201-933-0300, linumhometextiles.com
• Micro Cotton, +91 (4254) 223450, microcotton.com
• Pendleton Woolen Mills, 503-226-4801, pendleton-usa.com
• Riviera Home USA, 212-967-2014, rivierahomeusa.com
• Royal River Trading, exclusive wholesaler of Cuddledown, 207-761-0201, royalrivertrading.com
• Sustainable Threads, 732-940-7487, sustainablethreads.com
• Syona Home LLC, 425-444-7239, syonahome.com
• Trident, 212-684-6342, tridentindia.com
• Veritas USA, 646-590-3894, theveritas.com
• Welspun USA, 212-620-2000, welspun.com
• WestPoint Home, Inc., 800-533-8229, westpointhome.com
• Wülfing through Stellar Alliance, 212-563-6305