CARE FOR YOUR SECOND SKIN LIKE YOU WOULD FOR YOUR ACTUAL SKIN
The way we care for our clothes has a bigger impact on the longevity of the clothes and the environment than many people might realise. Detergents, fabric softeners, stain removals, washing machines, and dryers, all put stress on the environment as well as the clothing.
By putting some thought into the way you care for your clothes you will keep them looking great and lasting longer while also being kinder to the environment.
Like skin, fabric comes in many different types and requires the correct care to keep it healthy looking and prevent damage.
You don't want to be rough on your own skin, why be rough on your second skin?
When it comes to most clothes, there is no need to wash them after just a couple of wears. If you feel like they need a bit of freshening up, hang them outside to air for a while or even place them in the freezer for a bit. If you live in a place where it gets below 0 C in the winter, it’s an excellent time to air your clothes outside.
So before putting that shirt in the washing machine, ask yourself if it in fact really is dirty.
If it is, make sure to wash according to instructions on care label, use a mild, eco-friendly detergent, a gentle cycle, and set the temperature to cold (up to 30 C) or warm (40 C), unless otherwise instructed. A temperature of 30 - 40 C is usually enough and will many materials cannot even handle higher temperatures.
If the garment has a print, it is important to turn it inside-out before putting it in the washing machine. Place garments with lace and embellishments in a laundry bag. Close any zips to keep the teeth from rubbing against the garments.
Do not use dry cleaning services. Dry cleaning uses nasty chemicals that are absorbed by your skin and pollutes the environment.
Line drying is by far the best way to dry your clothes. It's better for your clothes and the environment, and your clothes will be left with a lovely scent of fresh air. If you don't have the possibility to line dry your clothes outside it is just as easy to hang them to dry indoors. Avoid tumble drying since this can damage or shrink the fabric and requires a lot of excess energy.
Stains can be removed without putting the whole garment in the washing machine and there are amazing stain removal products that are safer for the environment and plenty of household tricks to get rid of different types of stains. It is essential to remember that different stains behave differently and each stain should be assessed accordingly.
QUALITY MATERIALS SELECTED WITH CARE
Unlike conventional cotton, organic cotton is farmed according to internationally recognised organic farming standards and is free from pesticides and other synthetic and toxic chemicals. Organic production is an overall system of farm management and production that combines the best environmental practices, a high level of biodiversity, preservation of natural resources, and the application of high animal welfare standards. Most of the organic cotton fabrics used in the ready-to-wear collections are GOTS certified.
Modal is an ecological fibre made from beechwood. Lenzing produces the fibre using Edelweiss technology and both the pulp and the fibre are produced at the same site which means that the production is easy on energy and other resources. Lenzing has an OEKO-TEX product class one certificate.
Bamboo grows without pesticides and does not require a lot of water. The fabric is 100% natural and made from bamboo cellulose. As a material bamboo is very breathable and cool. Although bamboo is sustainable as a plant it should be noted that the fibre manufacturing process does not necessarily use the most sustainable methods. The bamboo silk used in the ready-to-wear collections is OEKO-TEX 100 certified and made by a manufacturer specialising in eco-friendly materials and processes.
TAGUA NUT BUTTONS
The raw material used for these buttons is 100% natural. Also referred to as ‘vegetable ivory’ or 'corozo', tagua, comes from the seed of a palm tree. The porous nature of the material makes it ideal for dyeing and its tightly wound fibres make it durable and scratch resistant. The buttons are dyed with non-toxic dyes tested for harmful chemicals.
RECYCLED POLYESTER ZIPPERS
All zippers used for the ready-to-wear collections are made out of post-consumer polyester. The zippers are chemically recycled and designed for a closed loop recycling program. Because the whole zipper is chemically recycled and made out of one material it can be broken down and made into a new zipper.
RECYCLED POLYESTER LABELS
The woven labels are made from recycled polyester completely in accordance to REACH regulations and are also OEKO-TEX certified.
The printing inks used for the stained pattern are environmentally friendly and made from natural oils and mineral pigments. The ink used on the T-shirts and tank tops is a water-based ink free from phthalates and PVC and manufactured in accordance to OEKO-TEX regulations.
5 x R = A BETTER LIFE YOUR CLOTHES
Buy, wear, and dispose of your clothes with respect to yourself, others, and the environment. Buy it because you want it and will wear it, buy it second hand, buy it from conscious brands. Wear it because you really like it, because it makes you feel good. If it is broken, mend it. If you’re bored with it rediscover it, give it to someone else, or make it into something new. If it’s beyond mending, dispose of it as well as possible and don’t give dirty, damaged clothes to charity.
Before you buy something ask yourself: 'Do I really need or want this?', 'Will I actually wear it?'. Fall in love with the items you buy. There is nothing wrong with retail therapy but if it is mindless it will not be a successful therapy session in the long run. Instead of 'shopping till you dro'p, only buy a few items that feel all the more precious. You’ll have more time to enjoy them.
If something is broken chances are it can be fixed. A loose or missing button can easily be sewed back on. Small holes, or open seams can be stitched together. Spend a rainy day mending all those clothes that have just been sitting there waiting to be cared for. And if you are not able to mend it yourself, there are plenty of professionals who can help you and online tutorials to learn from.
There are many ways of reusing fabrics and old clothes. If it cannot be given to charity or is beyond repair its components may still be in perfect condition to use for something else. Perhaps the fabric can be used to make a shopping bag. Slightly damaged fabrics can be cut into pieces and used as rags.
Before giving something to charity or throwing it away, see if you can rediscover it. Wear it in a completely different way or accessorise it with something new. Seeing it in a new way may help you appreciate it again. Any components that can be recycled should be done so accordingly. The fewer things that end up in landfill the better, even if it’s a natural based material.
Copyright Henrica Langh 2017
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