Hemp could be an answer to the fashion market’s duplicated require sustainable materials– but is its credibility holding it back? Here’s what you need to understand about the eco-friendly fabric that has captured the attention of forward-thinking designers.
What does hemp appear like?
Regardless of being associated with dust-coloured sacks, hemp is, in truth, utilized in more than 25,000 items worldwide. The fabric is consisted of long strands of fibre from within the stalk of plants such as flax, jute and stinging nettle, and bears some similarity to a matted horse’s hair before processing. The fibers are then spun together to produce a thread that can be woven into a fabric.
Hemp’s strength and resilience suggests clothes made from it last longer. Nevertheless, this has fuelled the misconception that hemp clothes is rigid and uneasy. “It needs the drive of designers and makers to use hemp proudly in a fashion-forward way,” says Stephanie Steele, a customer experience manager at Offset Storage facility who specialises in eco fabrics.
Why is hemp connected with hippy and cannabis subcultures?
Hemp’s nickname as “marijuana’s cousin” often distracts from the material’s numerous useful uses. “A high percentage of residents do not understand the distinction between commercial hemp and cannabis, and get the two blended regularly,” Sarah Hayes, director of product development at outside clothing business Patagonia, told Hypebeast.
“Cotton has actually become the more widespread a crop, since of its broad availability and low cost,” states Steele. “Because hemp was significantly stigmatised and acquired deeper unfavorable connotations, it stopped being grown.”
What does the law say on hemp?
Hemp, like cannabis, belongs to the marijuana genus of plants. This genus as a whole is categorized as a regulated substance in the UK and therefore hemp is prohibited to grow without a licence from the Office. As an outcome, it is rarely grown in the UK. Across the pond, however, the legalisation of industrial hemp last December is enabling US farmers to gather government aids to farm the crop.