Nylon, silk, polyester,rayon, velvet and now bamboo upholstery fabric is just on the horizon. Imagine putting bamboo fabric on your next upholstery job.
Bamboo fabric is a natural textile made from the pulp of the bamboo grass. The fabric has been growing in popularity because it has many unique properties, is more sustainable than most textile fibers, is light and strong, has excellent wicking properties, and is to some extent antibacterial. It is softer than the softest cotton, has a natural sheen to the surface and feels similar to silk or cashmere.
Unlike other anti-microbial fabrics, which require a chemical treatment, bamboo fiber fabric is naturally anti-microbial and requires no harmful chemicals.
Bamboo is of the world's most prolific and fastest-growing plants, and is able to reach maturity in about four years, compared to the typical 25 to 70 years for commercial tree species in the U.S. Though most people are generally familiar with this beautiful and graceful plant, the average person is usually astounded when learning that there are more than 1000 documented uses of bamboo including upholstery fabric in the near future
Bamboo is nature's most sustainable resource, is grown without pesticides or chemicals, is 100% biodegradable, and naturally regenerative. Bamboo is actually a tropical grass, with an extensive root system that sends out an average of four to six new shoots per year, naturally replenishing itself and growing to heights of 60 feet or more. Some bamboo species grow up to 4 feet per day and can be harvested every 3 to 4 years.
In Asia, bamboo has been used in the traditional hand-made production of paper for centuries. Now, through modern manufacturing processes, bamboo pulp is capable of producing bamboo fiber for use in yarn and fabric. Certain species of bamboo have the tensile strength equivalent to that of steel. It is planted and grown on family-owned farms that have been in agricultural use for generations. None of the fiber comes from tropical forests. Over 2.5 billion people work with or depend on bamboo as a natural resource.
At first, I had a hard time envisioning how one might make fabric from bamboo. After all, it's a hard wood. But it's not a tree--it's a fiberous grass, and those fibers can just be peeled apart to make yarn to make the bamboo fabric
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Bamboo fiber resembles cotton in its unspun form, a puffball of light, airy fibers. Many companies use extensive bleaching processes to turn bamboo fiber white, although companies producing organic upholstery bamboo fabric leave the bamboo fiber unbleached. To make bamboo fiber, bamboo is heavily pulped until it separates into thin component threads of fiber, which could be spun and dyed for weaving into bamboo upholstery fabric
Bamboo also is the most sustainable of the natural fibers. It is fast-growing--the type of bamboo used for making fabric, commonly known as Moso, can reach a mature height of 75 feet in just 45 to 60 days. Because of bamboo's natural antibacterial properties, it needs no pesticides. If there is sufficient rainfall, no additional irrigation is required. Bamboo regenerates naturally through an extensive root system that sends out an average of four to six new shoots per year. Anyone who has ever planted bamboo in their backyard knows it grows fast and abundant. Bamboo can be harvested and harvested and it will grow again and again. And when your bamboo fabric finishes it's useful life, it can return to nourish the earth, as it is 100% biodegradable.
Bamboo upholstery fabric could be the next fabric recovering your chair.
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