We need to talk about bamboo

Bamboo, once the furniture making material of choice, it is now seen by many as being the source of a wonder fabric. But, does Bamboo as a fabric deserve all the praise?

On the face of it, bamboo lives up to the hype, it’s an insanely renewable resource. It grows so quick that some people even say you can hear it grow, some strains grow up to four inches per day. As an alternative building material its incredibly strong and it naturally has antibacterial properties, sounds good right? Well, yes bamboo is great, for certain things, but is fabric made from bamboo automatically as good? No, short answer, it just isn’t.

The environmental impact of bamboo fabric is almost at the other end of the spectrum to the plants' benefits to the environment. Unfortunately, there are a few disadvantages to bamboo fiber which is what is used to make bamboo fabric and bamboo fabric clothing. To turn bamboo into the lovely white snuggly fleece like material we are becoming used to seeing in the shops, the bamboo fiber goes through a pretty harsh production process, a number of chemicals and bleaches are used to create the bamboo fabric properties eco-conscious shoppers are looking for.

Aside from the chemical process, there are other problems with fabric made from bamboo, namely, the antibacterial claim. Bamboo itself is antibacterial in nature. However, most if not all of those properties are lost in the bamboo fiber production process.

At Foxy RED Rocks, we deliberated long and hard about introducing bamboo into our fabric range, a lot of companies are already using it and are selling the “benefits” hard, but on reflection and after a bit of research we felt that at the moment, the benefits aren't really there. At Foxy RED Rocks we are always looking to the future and planning what the next exciting design or fabric choice will be.