Many items that were once only handmade designs are now products of the manufacturing assembly lines.
Textiles can be found in retail outlets, from the mass market to the artisanal crafter, but the latter seems to be making a cloth comeback. The art of creating unique and versatile textiles that can be used for a range of around the house items to wearable fashions is steadily becoming more popular, as many prefer more natural and quality handmade materials.
Paper No. 9 based in Brooklyn, New York has handcrafted, artisan made textiles. Their all natural, nontoxic and synthetic free process turns paper into a textile that can be sewn just like fabric. Their products are made from paper, but their finished items actually look more like leather than paper.
Their textiles are reportedly soft and movable, but can stand up over time and are even waterproof.
They don’t use plastics or animal byproducts in their materials, and standard processes include steps that reduce waste and are created without toxins. They also do not apply any chemicals like bleach or wastewater pollutants to produce their items.
Kinkarakawakami, a Japanese wall covering technique from the 19th century that resembles a golden leather finish was what initiated their paper textile concept. It seems to have a sort of rough but soft quality that works well on items like their clutches and wallets.
However, some of the clothing does appear somewhat uniform-ish, but still neat. The fact that it is made from paper certainly goes beyond the ordinary, and is promising for what is possible with this process. They can be customized to be more or less weighty, and the paper creates different effects that makes each one a distinctive design.
Above images are from Paper No. 9.
Cloth Fabric is another company with a sustainable approach. Located in Sydney, Australia they work with local artists to design and handcraft textiles and other materials.
Using natural fabrics that are not made with toxic inks or dyes, they try to operate as low impact as possible. They work with a lot of found items, castoffs and off-cuts to produce a wide range of products including cloth designs, ceramics and furniture.
They use renewable and sustainable materials, mainly hemp and linen for their products. They favor hemp due to its natural properties, and it doesn’t require pesticides or chemicals to manufacture. It is also antibacterial, mold and mildew resistant. It is extremely durable yet gets softer over time without losing its strength.
Their linens are also chosen for their naturally soft feel. Made from the fibers of the flax plant, they can be produced with low water usage techniques.
Their imperfect manifesto states their attitude about slow produced and handmade items.
Above images are from Cloth Fabric.
Applying creativity and a slow made approach to the textile design arena is one area among many which shows that a demand has been triggered for more conscientiously crafted products.
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