For thousands of years, hemp has been used as an industrial fiber. The Columbia History of the World notes that the oldest relic of human history is a bit of hemp fabric dating back to approximately 8,000 BC. Although hemp was historically the first choice for industry, the coarseness of the fiber restricted hemp from apparel and most home use. But, in the mid 1980′s researchers developed an enzymatic process to successfully remove lignin from the hemp fiber without compromising it’s strength. For the first time in history, de-gummed hemp fiber could be spun alone or with other fibers to produce textiles for apparel. The technological breakthrough has catapulted hemp to the forefront of modern textile design and fashion. Given hemp’s superiority to other fibers, the benefits of this breakthrough are enormous.
We chose to use hemp and hemp blend fabrics for many of our clothes because of it’s tremendous benefit to the planet and to you. Hemp is incredibly pest and disease resistant, and does not require the use of pesticides or herbicides. It also requires very little water to grow. Hemp cultivation actually improves the condition of the soil and had a reciprocally beneficial relationship to the earth. Hemp grows tall very quickly yielding high amounts of oxygen into the environment, it roots can be as long as 30 inches and after harvest, can be mulched into the soil replacing valuable nutrients and increasing soil health.
Hemp is one of the earth’s longest and strongest fibers and is the most resistant to weather, mold, salt, and sunlight, making it incredibly durable. The fiber is both insulative and breathable, keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It also softens over time and “wears in” (instead of wearing out). This fact is sure to make Tinctoria some of your favorite clothing.
Over 30 countries in the world grow hemp, yet here in the United States, it remains illegal. Though several states have passed legislation to legalize hemp cultivation, federal law classifying it as a Schedule I controlled substance keep those laws from going into effect. For more information about what you can do to help legalize industrial hemp, visit www.votehemp.com.
Hemp fabrics we use in your Tinctoria clothing:
100% Hemp (5.8 oz)
What else can we say? This woven fabric is 100% of the best stuff. It looks and feels a lot like linen, but without the wrinkles and all the benefits of hemp. The fabric gives a lot (stretches) as you wear it, but will return to the original shape and size with washing. It is machine washable and dryable.
Hemp/Silk Charmeuse (5.2 oz)
This fabric is 65% hemp and 35% silk charmeuse. It feels like a heavier weight raw silk and is shiny and luminous. It has beautiful drape, is very flattering on the body, and dyes beautifully. The natural dye colors look like semi-precious jewels on this fiber!
Hemp/Organic Cotton/Lycra (8 oz)
This stretch jersey is a blend of 54% hemp, 43% organic cotton, and 3% lycra. It has enough weight to be suitable for winter weather and it’s breath-ability makes it great for summertime or physical activities, like dance and yoga. Even better, because of it’s lycra content, this fabric holds it’s shape and does not get baggy or saggy. It leaves you feeling great in your clothes.