O Ecotextiles to show at West Coast Green

Will feature organic, eco-friendly textiles

Heath E. Combs, September 23, 2008

SEATTLE — Seattle-based O Ecotextiles will display for the first time at the West Coast Green conference and expo, which runs this Thursday through Sunday at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, Calif.

West Coast Green is geared towards the residential green building market. Event coordinators expect 400 exhibitors and 14,000 attendees. O Ecotextiles will show in Booth 638.

 The hemp fibers for this O Ecotextiles Rogue River fabric were grown by Romanian farmers in an area of the country dependent on hemp growing. Their growth includes use no pesticides, insecticides, fungicides or synthetic fertilizers, according to O Ecotextiles.The hemp fibers for this O Ecotextiles Rogue River fabric were grown by Romanian farmers in an area of the country dependent on hemp growing. Their growth includes use no pesticides, insecticides, fungicides or synthetic fertilizers, according to O Ecotextiles.

 

Fabrics are made from organic sources such as bamboo, hemp, abaca, ramie and linen. But beyond that, fabrics made in a way that is organically preferable, the company says.

"You can take organic cotton and it looks great. (But) if you spin it, weave it, dye it print it and finish it with toxic input, it's no longer a fabric you might want to bring into your house," said CEO Patty Grossman.

"It's taken us six years to transfer the toxic yuck to get it out of the textile production process and still come up with a high performance, high design fabric," she said. "It was not easy."

One of the company's new prints was chosen by EcoFabulous.com for the master bedroom of the Showhouse at the event.

"We are thrilled to show our product to people at West Coast Green, who will share our excitement that our fabrics are not only safe enough to eat, safe enough to use in your baby's room and are fully compostable at end of life, but whose production is also safe for the earth and animals," Grossman said in a press release.

The company's fabrics are used on upholstery by retailer ABC Carpet and Home and manufacturer Kindel Furniture, among others. In addition to upholstery, the textiles also are used for window coverings, top-of-bed and outdoor products.

House and Garden magazine selected O Ecotextiles for its "Best Merchandise" award at interior design show Decorex in 2007.
Grossman heads the textiles group developing green standards for the Sustainable Furnishings Council.

O Ecotextiles says it adheres to global green standards such as the environmental and health Global Organic Textile Standard certification as well as Oeko Tex Standard 100, which limits certain chemicals for certified yarns.

The company also said its fabrics have been tested to measure chemical emissions, and that the test results show the fabrics can be used to accrue Indoor Air Quality points from the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program.

The company also can provide McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry Cradle to Cradle certified backings and polyester impregnations, the company said. In the cradle-to-cradle process, materials are perpetually circulated for reuse; in the typical cradle-to-grave cycle, products and byproducts enter the waste stream.

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