SUSTAINABLE AND ORGANIC FABRICS

ELLISS recognises the importance of sustainability and being eco-conscious in the fashion world, that’s why all our clothing lines are carefully crafted from organic and sustainable fabrics. As all our materials are sustainable we are able to craft high-quality pieces that are kind to the environment. Organic fabric is known for being hypoallergenic, soft and breathable, all while using less harmful chemicals and pesticides throughout production. The team at ELLISS are passionate about making beautiful clothing that doesn’t harm the planet, and we want you to be passionate about it too.

Why does ELLISS use organic fabrics?

Here at ELLISS, we take many steps to reduce our carbon footprint. From mindful production processes to reducing our reliance on transportation, we strive to operate sustainably. A big part of this involves the use of our organic fabrics which are used to produce all of our interesting garments. But, why have we decided to source organic fabrics this way?

Hypoallergenic

Many people are born with very sensitive skin or skin allergies which are irritated by synthetic fibres and non-organic fabrics. At ELLISS, we want our clothing to be enjoyed and worn by everyone, even those who have this type of skin. Synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon can lead to bad reactions in sensitive skin, leading to discomfort. Organic fibres, on the other hand, are natural, with anti-bacterial qualities, and are much more comfortable to wear.

The way that organic fibres are coloured is another reason that they are hypoallergenic. While regular fabric manufacturers use large amounts of chemicals, metals, chlorine and whiteners in the colouring of their products, organic manufacturers use safer alternatives such as water-based dyes which is more pleasing on the skin.

Soft

You shouldn’t be surprised to find that organic fabrics are softer and more comfortable than their synthetic alternatives. Organic cotton in particular, because of the way it is picked, is certainly softer than regular cotton. This is because organic cotton is handpicked, as opposed to machine-picked, and this means that the cotton fibres are better protected – resulting in higher levels of softness.

Sustainable

You’re probably aware that organic fabric is more sustainable and eco-friendlier than non-organic products, but how exactly is this achieved? One of the main reasons is the reduced wastage of water. In the regular production of fabrics, a lot of water is used to reach the final product. In organic production, the amount of water used is reduced and a lot of the water is re-used to reduce wastage, increasing the levels of sustainability.

Uses less harmful chemicals and pesticides

Non-organic products are grown with the help of chemicals and pesticides which has an overall negative effect on the environment. The pesticides that are used upset the ecological balance in the soil that the plant is grown in. Not only does this lead to soil loss and damage, but it also harms the fauna in the ecosystem too.

On the other hand, organic cotton is grown naturally, without the use of these nasty chemicals that have such a negative effect. ELLISS is proud to be using these alternatives in the production of our clothing.

Moisture-wicking

Another reason why we choose to use organic fabrics is that they are naturally moisture-wicking. Bamboo, in particular, is highly absorbent and can pull moisture away from the skin so that it can evaporate. This is an ideal material for hot or cool temperatures as it’s a great temperature regulator.

Strong and naturally durable

The production techniques involved in picking organic fabrics often mean that the fibres are better cared for. This is true in the case of organic cotton where the plant is manually picked by hand. Looking after the fibres in this way prevents them from getting snapped, damaged or shortened. Not only does this mean that the end-product is softer, but it also means that the fibres are more durable. You may find that organic fabrics are more expensive than your typical fast-fashion products, but there is a reason for this – they last a lot longer than fast-fashion garments due to the way that they’ve been produced.

What type of organic fabric does ELLISS use?

There are many different types of organic fabric, and ELLISS uses a range of them. Each organic fabric has its own manufacturing methods and properties which make them unique and suitable for different garments.

Organic Cotton

One of the organic fabrics that we like to use at ELLISS is organic cotton. As mentioned previously, organic cotton has many properties that make it perfect for clothing! In addition to this, it’s more sustainable than regular cotton.

How is organic cotton manufactured?

We’ve mentioned that the organic cotton fibres are handpicked rather than machine-picked, but how does the manufacturing process work? After the cotton plant has been picked, a ‘ginning’ process begins which turns cotton into fibres and removes any unwanted dirt or leaves. Then, the cotton is spun in a process where fibres pass through a machine and become yarn, making the material now ready to be weaved or knitted.

The final stage of organic production is the dyeing process, where only natural dyes are used. These types of dyes come from the ground such as indigo, onion shells and turmeric which are all used to give fabrics their colours.

What are the properties of organic cotton?

Organic cotton is a great option for clothing as it is soft, insulating and breathable. The properties of the fabric mean that it is easy to care for, wash and dry.

Bamboo

Bamboo is a great product for clothing, this is due to its high stretchability and heat regulation properties.

How is bamboo fabric manufactured?

First of all, bamboo leaves and the inner part of a bamboo plant are crushed. Following this, these crushed plant arts are soaked in a natural enzyme solution which breaks the plant down into workable fibres. These fibres can then be washed and spun into fabric form, which is how we make many of our garments! The process of using bamboo for clothing production is more sustainable than non-organic fabrics as there is no replanting required. This is because it is a fast-growing plant which self-regenerates from its own shoots with no need for fertilizer unlike regular cotton for example.

What are the properties of bamboo fabric?

Bamboo fabric is a popular organic fabric to use for clothing as it is stretchy, arguably more flexible than cotton. The material is also very easy to wave because of its high thread count and durability. The nature of the fibres also means that the material is soft to the touch and very durable. It also has heat-regulation properties which we mentioned previously.

Hemp

We love using hemp as a material for clothing because of its sustainable properties and ability to hold shapes, making it perfect for structured garments.

How is hemp manufactured?

The hemp plant is cut for production as soon as the male plants begin to release pollen. The stems of the plant are laid out for many weeks which triggers decomposing and leaves the fibres used for clothing production exposed. A woody core is removed from the hemp plant and then the fibres are spun to make the yarn which can then be weaved into clothing.

The great thing about hemp growth and production is that it requires no pesticides and requires very little water to grow. Hemp causes very little damage to the soil that it grows in as it renews the soil with every growth cycle. The long roots that grow beneath the plant also prevent soil erosion and keep the topsoil in good condition.

There is little need for massive transportation costs of hemp as it can be grown in most temperate regions, close by to manufacturing plants if necessary.

What are the properties of hemp?

Not only is hemp easy to grow without the requirement of chemicals, but it also produces strong fibres. Garments made from hemp are insulating, breathable, light-weight and absorbent. The nature of the material means that garments created out of this fabric are also UV and mould-resistant – ideal for long-lasting products.

Econyl

One of the latest developments in sustainable fabric, especially in the swimwear industry, is Econyl. This is a type of nylon that is made entirely from recycled and waste products as opposed to synthetic fabrics.

All ELLISS swimwear is made using Econyl for a luxurious look and feel while also cleaning up our oceans!

How is Econyl manufactured?

Waste products such as abandoned fishing nets, textiles and carpets are taken to a pretreatment facility. At this point in production, the waste is shredded into small pieces that are then broken down through de and re-polymerisation. Following this, the pieces can be processed into yarn which can be woven into the garments that you see in our store!

Not only does Econyl re-use unwanted products to make something great, but it also cleans up the ocean from harmful products. Fishing nets are the cause of death for many marine creatures for example, and Econyl fabrics can go on to be recycled further once they are used.

What are the properties of Econyl?

Econyl has been created to replicate Nylon 6. This means that Econyl is relatively crease-proof, durable and is resistant to sunlight.

Why should you avoid buying non-organic cotton?

There are many reasons why you should stop buying non-organic cotton and make the switch to organic cotton.

First of all, the production process of non-organic cotton is harmful to the environment through soil erosion, pesticides and water wastage. Not only this, but the use of pesticides is expensive and harmful for farmers who must regularly come into contact with the chemicals. There is also the issue with chemical usage and water wastage throughout the dying process. The waste liquids that are produced as a result of these chemicals are often released into local waterways and rivers which go on to affect marine life and the livelihood of local people.

If you’re someone who suffers from sensitive skin or are prone to skin rashes or eczema, you should try to avoid buying non-organic fabric. The chemicals that are involved in the creation of synthetic materials are known to irritate the skin and cause flare-ups. Natural fibres are made from organic produce and therefore contain no harmful ingredients that could lead to a skin reaction.

The sustainability factor is another huge consideration. Fashion is becoming ‘faster’ as the years pass by, many people are guilty of only buying a garment once before it goes into the bin. One of the reasons for this is because of fashion trends changing so rapidly, but another is that the quality of fast-fashion products is a lot lower than those made from organic materials. Because of the careful production process that occurs for organic fabrics, the fibres become less damaged. In return, the material that is weaved is stronger, softer and more durable – meaning that the clothing can last longer.

As we can see, there are many benefits of using organic fabric and that is why all of ELLISS’ products are made from these materials. These types of fabrics aren’t all the same either, each material has own unique properties that make them ideal for manufacturing different garments such as swimwear and jumpers.

It’s clear to see that, opposed to the production of normal fabrics, the manufacturing process of organic materials does not harm the environment. Even if your reason for not purchasing regular fabrics is not to do with the environment, it’s worth realising that organic fibres produce stronger, softer and longer-lasting garments that are worth investing in.