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Why love linen - Benefits of wearing linen clothes

benefits of wearing linen clothing

It's no coincidence that as the weather gets warmer, linen clothing hits the shelves. There are a number of benefits to this relaxed yet elegant fabric that make it perfect for the Spring/Summer months. Not only is it a beautifully breathable material, but it's generally more sustainable than cotton and other popular threads. Here are our top five reasons for loving linen:

linen is strong and durable                                             Image Source: Hans Blomquist

1. Strength and durability
Linen is considered to be the strongest of all natural fibres, and it's even been found to get stronger with washes! It has been dated back to 8000 BC and in ancient Egypt it was used as currency, demonstrating it's strong and sturdy nature. This means that linen clothing will last for many Summer seasons to come, making it a perfect addition to any conscious, capsule wardrobe.

flax plants where linen is made from

2. It's a natural fibre with a lower environmental impact than cotton
Linen is made from the stalks of flax plants, which are resilient species that can grow in poor soils requiring very little if any fertilizer. The linen production process has been found to be significantly less water intensive than that for cotton, giving it a lower water footprint. Almost all of the flax plant can be used, and with the demand for flax seeds and oils increasing in the health food industry, there is very little to no wastage of the plants. Plus, being a natural fibre it's also biodegradable.

white linen blouse

3. Breathable and highly absorbent
As linen fibres are hollow they allow more airflow over your body than other materials. They are also highly absorbent, gaining up to 20% of their dry weight in moisture without feeling damp to touch. This makes linen perfect for sunny spells and warm getaways, helping you to keep cool and avoid embarrassing sweat patches!

4. Naturally insect repelling
Yes, you read that correctly - linen is thought to naturally repel insects like moths, so you're unlikely to find any unwanted bite marks when taking out your warm weather wardrobe!

linen is luxurious

5. It's luxurious
Flax plants must be pulled from the ground to maintain the full length of their fibres. The plants are then left in a field to soften, so that the fibres are easier to separate. Once extracted, the fibres are collected, rolled and stored for two to three months for further softening, before they are twisted and processed with a spinning technique. This lengthy process is why linen is considered to be one of the most luxurious natural fabrics, and why linen is more expensive than other materials like cotton.

We love linen so much that our latest collection is made of pure linen. Our linen collection is focused on elegant yet fuss-free staple pieces for Spring/Summer. In shades of navy and khaki, they're great additions to a classic capsule wardrobe. Click here to browse it now.

See a few of the styles here:

white linen organic cotton t-shirt

 

olive green linen dress

 

sea blue linen shirt dress

 

white oversized linen shirt

Why We Love Organic Cotton

organic cotton clothing

Organic cotton. You probably know of it as a 'better' cotton, a more environmentally friendly cotton. But what does the 'organic' part actually mean?

Organic cotton is grown without the use of pesticides or fertilizers. Only 2.5% of the world's farmland is used to grow cotton, yet 10% of all chemical pesticides and 22% of insecticides are sprayed on conventional cotton (OrganicCotton.Org). Heavy pesticides disrupt ecosystems, damaging the soil and contaminating water supplies. These chemicals can be toxic. The World Trade Organisation estimated 20,000 people die every year due to the use of agricultural pesticides in developing countries (WHO). Conventional cotton production also uses huge amounts of water. The drying of the Aral Sea is in part due to diversions of huge amounts of water for cotton farming (Columbia University)!

organic cotton fabric

Organic cotton farming uses natural pesticides instead of synthetic chemicals, that help to keep pests away without causing major environmental impacts (Speezees). These include chili, neem, garlic and soap (FairTrade.Org). Organic cotton farmers also usually grow other crops in between small plots of cotton, like tomatoes and aubergines. The extra foliage helps to create a  natural barrier against pests and provides another source of income. It also helps to reduce the impact of water pollution by up to 98%! Organic cotton farming is also largely rain-fed, saving even more water.

organic cotton production

So if organic cotton farmers use natural pesticides, why do we often pay more? When it comes to fast fashion, someone or something else is usually paying the price. The farmers are often being underpaid and are exposed to harmful chemicals. The environment is also being degraded. So when you buy organic cotton, you are getting a higher quality, mindfully made product. You are supporting more environmentally friendly, safe and sustainability farming processes (Cottonedon.org). We believe it's worth paying more to fight the exploitation of our planet and our people!

organic cotton in India

We at Bibico have therefore continued our 100% organic cotton collection into our Spring line. We've consciously crafted classic items, great for everyday, to help you to style yourself sustainably. This jersey collection is produced by a small, family-run business in southern India that we have worked with for a number of years.

If your interested in finding out more about organic cotton we recommend you watch the True Cost Movie. See the trailer here or watch the the whole movie on netflix.

We hope you love the organic cotton collection just as much as we do! Follow this link to shop: Shop organic cotton clothing

organic cotton clothing by bibico

How To Wash A Wool Jumper & Look After It

how to wash a wool jumper and look after it

Many people get put off buying wool jumpers because they are hard to clean and look after. It’s a great shame as wool is such a wonderful fabric. Unlike synthetic fabrics wool is breathable, very warm and once it has eventually been worn out (which usually takes a long time) it is 100% biodegradable so it’s good for the environment too.

To show you that it is not that difficult to wash and care for your wool jumper we have put a little guide together to show you how to do it:

1.Don’t wash it! (or at least not very often)

The great thing about wool jumpers is that you don’t have to wash them as often as knitwear made from synthetic fibres. Wool does not stain easily and does not easily absorb aromas, making it ideal for multiple wears, therefore making it ideal for outdoor use. So if your jumper isn’t physically dirty and has no distinctive odours, there is no rush to wash it!

machine washing wool jumpers

2. Hand wash or machine wash

Always check the wash care label but if in doubt hand wash your wool jumpers. Most new washing machines have a wool hand wash cycle which is quite effective but for delicate wool jumpers especially hand knitted jumpers or jumpers made from mohair we would recommend hand wash only.

how to hand wash a wool jumper

3. How to hand wash your wool jumper

a. Soak your wool jumper in cold water a few hours before washing it. This will allow the wool fibres to become saturated and stop them from shrinking.

b. Use a detergent that is made for hand washing wool garments - these detergents prevent bobbling occuring and preserve the fibres. We recommend using Ecocover Delicate.

c. Add the correct amount of detergent and gently wash without rubbing the fibres together too much.

d. Finally rinse the jumper in cold or luke warm water in order to remove the soap.

4. How to dry your wool jumper

a. Never twist or wring wool jumpers or they will lose their shape.

b. Squeeze and press out all the water you can.

c. For non-delicate wool garments you can use a very low spin cycle in the washing machine (again check your wash care label) however for very delicate garments such as mohair or cashmere it is recommended to air dry.

d. Lie the jumper flat so it does not lose shape. Lying it on top of a towel will soak up additional moisture.

How to care for your wool jumper

folded wool sweaters

1. Fold them, don’t hang them

Never fold or hang a wool or cashmere jumper as they will lose their shape. Always fold them when storing them.

remove bobbles from knitwear with a bobble buster

2. Bobble buster

Bobbling is the result of two pieces of fabric rubbing together and can also occur with washing.

Make sure you remove the bobbles regularly. Invest in an electronic bobble remover. They are cheap and will make your jumper look new again. You can buy one from Lakeland here

brush your knitwear

3. Brush them

Remove hairs and excess lint with a soft clothes brush. You can buy one here.

comb your knitwear to get rid of bobbles

4. Comb them

For fine knitwear or cashmere you can use a cashmere comb to remove any excess bobbles. Buy can buy one here

cedar balls to keep moths away from your knitwear

5. Keep the moths away

Store your jumpers with cedar balls to ensure your knitwear is not attacked by moths. If you find moths holes in your knitwear put your jumpers in the freezer for 48 hours and then wash. This should kill the moth eggs. You can buy some here

6. Keep them dry

Before you store away your jumpers for the summer make sure they are bone dry to stop any mold or mildew occuring.