Hemp Clothing – Sustainable, Versatile, Comfortable - purehempbotanicals

Thursday, Aug 11, 2016

Hemp has had many uses over thousands of years, not the least of which has been in textiles. Most familiar are the industrial applications of these textiles. But did you know that hemp fabrics make great clothing?

Until the 1920s, 80% of clothing was made from hemp. Levi Strauss chose hemp, for its combination of ruggedness and comfort, to make the lightweight duck canvas for his first jeans, made in California in the 1870s. Now, coming full circle, some items in the exclusive, Levi Strauss “Red” line of clothing are made of 2×1 hemp 8oz. denim

For a period, hemp declined as a textile in part because of its erroneous association with the psychoactive properties of marijuana and being criminalized along with its sister plant. In addition, the coarseness of hemp’s fibers limited its use in apparel. Traditional methods to soften vegetable fibers like cotton and flax, used acids, which left hemp fibers weak and unstable. In the mid-1980s, an enzymatic process was developed that softens hemp without compromising its strength, allowing it to be spun into fabrics for apparel.