Bristol Cloth project make cashmere scarves that can be planted back

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2020-12-24 13:06:20 – United Kingdom

A group of women at Botanical Inks and Bristol Weaving Mill have successfully completed the crowdfunding campaign for the original project, Bristol Cloth. The project was founded by Babs Behan and her team England's first locally grown sustainable cashmere.

These scarves are 100% biodegradable and can be returned to the soil at the end of their lifecycle, as biological nutrients. The limited-edition scarves were spun and dyed in Yorkshire and woven in Bristol. 

The entire production process has been taken from traditional methods. Babs Behan, the founding director of Bristol Cloth project & Botanical Inks, stated that the traditional English heritage dyes which have been used for centuries in old England have been utilised in their process. She stated that they used organic indigo leaf, which is the highest value natural dye in the world due to its complicated and laborious extraction.

Bristol recently acquired the award for European Green Capital in 2015, the same year the local weaving mill came to existence. This mill has become part of the Bristol Cloth project where the UK's first regenerative non-toxic textiles are produced.

Behan stated that they source their wool from a Fernhill farm that uses 'holistic farming' techniques. Behan explained that Lots of animals are kept together in one area putting lots of nutrients back into the soil. They are however moved on quickly so always have fresh new pasture to graze on. A diverse variety of plants are grown ensuring the variety of nutrients and minerals are put back into the soil.

The plants are allowed to grow tall and get deeper roots to enable them to be able to capture more carbon from the air and lock it back into the soil. By using natural materials for the colouring, like plants, minerals and insects, the fibre is completely safe to go back into the ground after use.

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