What Are Eco-Friendly Fabrics?

“If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production.”

— Pete Seeger

Eco-friendly fabrics or textiles are generally defined as fabrics that have been made with a minimum use of chemicals and pesticides, best land management practices, sustainable farming and animal friendly practices; they follow fair trade practices, and have been eco-friendly certified.

When considering your well being and that of the environment, eco-friendly textiles are one way to create a healthier home.

Many companies are providing designers with their version of eco-friendly.  One of my favorite leather manufactures, Edelman Leather, has received the Greenguard certification, meaning that their leathers have very low chemical emissions.  Additionally, all of their leather is a by-product of the food industry; no waste! Plus their color options are unlimited, and my dog, Gracie is a big fan.


Edelman Leather

Gracie - Edelman 005-2


Another company, Knoll, defines their ecofriendly or “Environmental” fabrics as: “fabrics that have 49%+ recycled content or 75%+ natural fiber.”  Knoll though mostly used for commercial applications, has a large amount of more modern fabrics you can use in either your office or your home.


Knoll Textiles

The process of dyeing and drying fabrics and the lifetime of a fabric are also measurements used to determine the eco-friendliness of a fabric.  Creation Bauman is a European company that has been manufacturing fabrics for over a hundred years.  They have a strong commitment to sustainability and the clean manufacturing of fabrics.  Their beautiful fabrics can be used throughout your house as upholstery, bedding, and drapery.  If you have allergies, this is a great option for you

Fabric Dyeing

Fabrics are slasher dyed or hank dyed and refined according to the client’s needs


Other eco-friendly options for your home could include fabrics made from organically grown and/or minimally processed products such as Cotton and Linen, Bamboo, Hemp, Jute, Muslin or Calico, Ramie, Nettle, and Organic Wool. These options are all available to someone looking to improve the environment of their home.  The purchasing of nautral materials also helps to strengthen the eco-friendly fabric market and encourage manufacturers to continue to provide these types of materials.


Nettle Fabrics

All of the fabrics mentioned can be purchased through Willetts Design & Associates, Inc.



Featured Image: Creation Baumann