Sourcing sustainable and wearable fabrics is at the core of our philosophy. From natural hemp to wood-based fibres, we choose carefully and with the planet in mind. We always opt for materials that have a kinder production process and are biodegradable, and it’s important that our fabrics are long lasting and kind to our customers' skin. We are proud to bring you innovative fibres that not only look great but feel wonderful, and have good karma to boot. Read on to learn a bit more about Cultiva's most responsible materials.
Hemp fabric has been used by humanity for thousands of years as a natural fibre, and is known for its durable fibrous strength. With over 20,000 uses, hemp has been used for industrial fabrics such as sails for ships, canvas, sacks, rope, bedding, cigarette filter papers, bio-composite plastic, organic compost, thermal insulation, concrete blocks and fibre reinforcement. The best thing about hemp textile crops is the entire plant can be utilised to make other products.
Hemp is a plant that is capable of putting nutrients back into the soil and is extremely fast growing. Just one example is how hemp can produce 250% more fibre than cotton. Its natural resistance allows the crop to be grown without pesticides, herbicides and with minimal water use.
Hemp clothes often last longer than any other with natural resistance to mould, bacteria and ultraviolet light. Hemp has the ability to hold its shape well and will inevitably become softer after multiple washes. For the best result, use our hemp liquid detergent to wash your eco-friendly garments.
This legume plant has an extremely high tensile strength and has one of the highest cellulose content out of many natural fibres.
Dew or water retting is a common process for fibre break up after harvest. The stalk is broken down into bast fibre, tow and hurds. The bast fibre is spun into textile products. Tow is often used for animal, home insulations and hardwearing textile applications. Finally, the hurds (also known as shiv) are used to make hemp building materials.
Bast fibre hemp yarns today are usually blended with materials such as cotton, wool and silk to improve and diversify their performance properties. 100% hemp material can also be achieved but is used mostly for course upholstery materials in order to take advantage of its hard-wearing properties.
Organic Cotton refers to naturally cultivated cotton, grown without the use of any synthetic agricultural chemicals. Organic Cotton producers do not use fertilizers, pesticides or transgenic technology. The cotton is grown in a traditional way: picked from a field as a fluffy fibre and then spun into thread. However, it differs because of the elimination of toxic chemicals from the production process, making it much kinder to people and the earth. There are further reasons why Organic Cotton is better for the planet.
Most Organic Cotton is grown in areas where farmers rely on rain to water their cotton, easing the pressure on water supplies in local communities. Less water is used generally as there is no need to dilute chemicals. Organic farming creates healthy soils, which act like a sponge, soaking up water during floods. Using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment, organic production of cotton maintains soil fertility, reduces the reliance on toxic substances, and builds biologically diverse agriculture. Regulations also prohibit the use of genetically engineered seed for organic farming. Organic Cotton combines tradition, innovation and science to benefit the shared environment. Once woven into material it is light, breathable, and easy to work with and wear. It is also a skin-friendly fabric, soft to the touch and great at absorbing moisture. That’s why we love including Organic Cotton in our products.
Lyocell is an eco-friendly fabric that represents a milestone in the development of environmentally sustainable textiles. It is a man-made fibre composed of cellulose. This comes from wood pulp and is reconstituted by dry jet-wet spinning. The production of lyocell uses nanotechnology in a closed-loop process that recovers or decomposes all solvents and emissions.
There are many benefits of lyocell for the planet. The production process is economical in its use of energy and natural resources. Its manufacture does not produce by-products that are harmful to health or the environment. Cellulose, its main ingredient, is obtained from well-managed forests without the need for pesticides. When compared to the manufacture of other cellulose fibres, lyocell production is significantly less toxic and wasteful. Furthermore, it is 100% biodegradable.
As a fabric, lyocell is very versatile. It can have a variety of finishes, from a smooth silk-like texture to a softness similar to that of suede. It is also absorbable and can therefore be easily dyed. This regenerated fibre has natural elasticity and strength, whilst remaining light, comfortable and breathable.
We like Lyocell as it is particularly soft and supple to the touch, and it drapes beautifully.
Tencel is a sustainable fibre made from wood pulp. This comes from trees that are grown and replaced on specialised tree farms. Tencel fibres are produced using recyclable, earth-friendly solvents, and manufactured using an environmentally responsible production process. What’s more, the fibres are compostable and biodegradable, and thus can fully revert back to nature.
Tencel manufacturing follows a closed loop production process, which transforms wood pulp into cellulosic fibres with low environmental impact. It creates a durable and long-lasting fabric, which ultimately minimises waste and improves the longevity of clothing.
What sets Tencel apart? Well, it’s great at absorbing moisture, breathable and can prevent bacteria growth. For this reason, it is ideal for use in active wear and yoga apparel. Tencel can also be blended with a variety of fabrics to enhance their natural properties. For example, when blended with cotton it improves wrinkle-resistance and gives the lustrous feel of silk.
Gentle and comfortable, Tencel is kinder to your skin and the planet than many synthetic fibres, making it a great option to incorporate in your sustainable wardrobe.
Peace Silk has emerged as an ethical alternative to traditional silk, produced using a non-violent breeding and harvesting process. It is grown sustainably in India according to the principle of Ahimsa, an ancient Indian culture of nonviolence which applies to all living beings.
So, how does it work? To begin with, wild silkworms are chosen, as opposed to domestic breeds. Eventually the cocoon of the silkworm is carefully cut open, allowing the developing moth to break free and continue its lifecycle. Craftsmen then delicately reel or spin the cocoon using unique technology. Peace silk is manufactured under stringent environmental standards. This is in contrast to traditional methods where the silkworm is killed to harvest the cocoon.
This natural, organic fabric also has some wondrous qualities. Sleeping on Peace Silk can help prevent wrinkles and sleep lines due to reduced friction. It is hypoallergenic and does not contain any harmful toxins. The fabric is renowned for its opulent texture and finish, and drapes beautifully. What’s more, it is biodegradable and compostable, therefore contributing to a circular system. Peace Silk presents a sustainable and peaceful way to enjoy a truly luxurious fabric.