Archive for March, 2008



When it comes to products, the 3 R’s {Reduce – Reuse – Recycle} can help to determine how eco-friendly it is.

  • Reduce the impact of the material the product is made from.
  • Buy high-quality products that can be re-used easily and often.
  • Recycle the scraps created from the manufacturing process.

Ask these questions about the product:

  1. What type of material is the product made from?
    • Is it recycled?
    • Is it from a fast-renewing resource?
    • Is it produced LITE*-ly? (*with Low Impact to the Environment)
  2. What is the product’s lifecycle?
    • Will it bio-degrade easily?
    • Is it durable enough to be re-used over and over again?
    • Is it recyclable?
  3. How does the supplier reduce its impact on the environment?
    • Does the supplier aim to reduce its carbon footprint?

 Determining the “green”ness of a product can be a grey area. You’ll need to decide which components are most important to you. For example, using a local supplier is more eco-friendly than shipping in from another continent, but the organic cotton grown in Turkey and Pakistan puts less toxic chemicals into our ecosystems than conventionally-grown cotton in the U.S.

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from Jan 08 Printwear magazine:

The global organic cotton apparel, home and personal care products market topped one billion dollars in 2006, with estimates projecting many times that number in years to come, according to results of a forthcoming report from Berkeley-based Organic Exchange (OE). Report highlights were released at the organization’s fifth annual conference and marketplace in Monterey, Oct 31 – Nov 2, with more than 330 professionals from 39 countries in attendance, representing the entire global organic fiber supply chain. According to the OE Organic Cotton Market Report 2007, global retail sales for organic cotton products is projected to increase 83% to $1.9 billion by the end of 2007, $3.5 billion in 2008, $4.5 billion in 2009, and $6.8 billion in 2010.

Organic Exchange logo

Reasons for past market growth include strong consumer demand for apparel, home textile and personal care products containing organic fibers as well as expansion of organic cotton programs by companies that have been in the organic market for several years. Additionally, organic cotton apparel has become more fashion-forward, with a wider variety of products across categories. Other trends include increased use of other organic fibers, such as organic wool, linen, and even leather, and certification to standards such as the Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS) and Oeko-Tex processing standards, as well as Fair Trade. Founded in 2002, OE facilitates expansion of the global organic cotton fiber supply by working closely with farmers, leading brands and retailers and their business partners to develop organic cotton programs.

{molly’s 2 cents: Organic Exchange is an awesome organization– great example of folks who are in it for the right reasons!}

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Two major apparel-makers announce more eco-options in 08:

 ALO introduces bamboo as a basic for spring to reinforce its mission to minimize the environmental impact of its fabrics. The performance fabric featured in several men’s and women’s styles blends stretch bamboo and cotton spandex to create a lightweight, breathable jersey fabric. This product also boasts moisture-wicking properties and is naturally anti-bacterial, hypoallergenic, and breathable with no added chemicals.alo’s bamboo tank (front) w2006crnt-back-womens-tank-tops-t-shirts-f.jpg

Apparel maker Anvil knitwear reveals the next line in its sustainable apparel collection: AnvilRecycled t-shirts. Made from a pre-consumer recycled cotton blend, AnvilRecycled t-shirts will be available this spring!

The primary components of the shirts are the clippings that are created when making other tees. These clippings are then sorted by color and chopped into a fine, linty material, which is spun into yarn and used to produce the recycled cotton t-shirts. The simplified manufacturing process reduces use of energy and resource. By re-processing pre-consumer textile scraps into consumer-ready shirts, Anvil is able to reduce incinerator and landfill waste. Also, the dyeing process is eliminated becaues the textile clippings are color blended.

from Promowear Magazine, March/April 08

{Molly’s notes: The alo bamboo tanks are super cute. My favorite colors that it comes in are “leaf” and “currant” –shown here– They also make short-sleeve and long-sleeve bamboo tees. Ali and I had some printed with StLouisGreen.com’s logo on the tail for their fabulous launch party on the 6th.

I’m excited about Anvil’s new venture into recycled cotton tees, because this will make them more readily available on the market.. I sourced some from the company that will actually be manufacturing them for Anvil, but this means that hopefully more folks will know about and buy recycled cotton tees!}

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