It’s a Bamboo-tiful World
by Summer Bowen
For Whole Life Time‘s Green Fashion Issue, March 2007
Imagine standing on your bamboo flooring, chopping bamboo shoots on your bamboo cutting board. Give your hands a quick rinse with bamboo soap, dry them with your bamboo hand towel, and call in the bambinos who are playing with their new bamboo skateboards. With the East’s fastest growing plant quickly sprouting up in homes all over the West, this scenario’s not too far from reality. The latest bamboo craze? The smooth and silky fabric that has environmentalists, clothing designers and fashionistas utterly bamboozled.
Bamboo’s eco-footprint is smaller than a size 5 stiletto. The highly renewable grass, praised for its rapid, several-feet-a-day growth, can be harvested in as little as three years. While bamboo, like hemp, is not yet certified organic, it possesses a natural ability to ward off plant munching pests without the use of toxic pesticides. Once purchased, a well-made bamboo garment will last years in your wardrobe, requires less laundering than other fabrics, and is 100 percent biodegradable.
Not only is bamboo easy on the earth, it’s easy on the… nose? Morris Saintsing of Bamboosa, a company that makes well-cut basics out of the eco-fabric, explained part of the allure for his customers is bamboo’s antimicrobial properties: “You can’t make it stink,” he swears. And believe him, it’s not for lack of trying. “I wore one shirt for seven days in the summer while fishing. I looked like I’d rolled in the mud, but the shirt smelled like it was just out of the dryer.”
Read more. (Scroll down several articles. You’ll find it!)