The latest in the news and spreading its eco friendly tenets is the bamboo fabric. When everyone in the world is talking about sustainable fashion and ways to “save the planet”, bamboo fabric is emerging as a winner. Fashion Network recently wrote about Etro’s beautiful eco friendly bamboo fashion where the gorgeous Kean Etro from Milan says, “The thing about bamboo is that it grows everywhere, it’s invasive. So we should use the fibre. It’s true diversity. When you think of the enormous quantity of water we use to make cotton, bamboo looks like a wonder material by comparison”.
Jewellery designer and fashionista. Riddhima Kapoor Sahni, says, “I haven’t had much experience with it but I have heard from people who say that the fabric is really soft, anti-bacterial and keeps you fresh and is eco-friendly too.”
Bamboo fibre is softer than cotton and compared to the soft texture of pure cashmere and silk. In order to be made into fabric, the bamboo is taken out of the stalk, mixed into solution and then spun into yarn.
It is extremely popular for its special features of moisture absorption and its anti-bacterial properties. The bio agent Bamboo kun in the fibre keeps bacteria away. The ultra violet nature of the fibre has also made it popular especially in summers and amongst children and pregnant ladies. It keeps you cool in summers and warm in winters.
Once you discover the fabric, you will want all your clothes to be made out of that soft material.
The fabric in its current form is limited to comfort wear. Great for active wear, maternity wear, inner wear, casual T-shirt’s and shorts. In India designers like Anita Dogre and Madhu Jain have already started experimenting with this fabric and their designer collections have made an impact . Currently though, there are not many manufacturers and not many production houses in the game as yet and we believe, it has huge scope to evolve and grow. The prediction is that this will be the rage in the future.
Soumen Biswas based out of China, the owner of GC APPARELS PTE, has great knowledge about fabrics, fashion and the retail market across the globe. He says, “Bamboo fabric is wrinkle resistant, moist absorbent and having natural odor free properties. So, it’s a great fabric for sportswear where sweat is a major concern. Due to its high absorbency, it has a great colour outcome and fastness. The real brightness of each colour can be achieved in bamboo fabric. It can be dyed with organic dyes.”
Ritwik Ghosh of VRX Sports, who is based out of China and Singapore has used bamboo fabric extensively and visited few companies manufacturing bamboo fabric products. He believes it’s a much softer and absorbent fabric than cotton and consumes less natural resources than cotton to grow. Bamboo fabric can take sustainable fashion to a new level while adding few extra notches of comfort for the users.
The challenge for bamboo fabric to come to mainstream are two folds — firstly lack of knowledge and awareness, secondly because of the fabric’s ultra softness it has always being positioned in the comfort category. As per some research fashion/apparels is the second most polluting industry. Thus, Ritwik believes that as the industry collectively moves towards sustainable fashion, there will be some innovation in fabric technology which will enable designers to create fabric which will retain the natural goodness of bamboo and make the fibre strong enough to create different fashionable garments.
—The writer helms a fashion brand with international elements, and walks the talk when it comes to runway rousing!