Our Cotton paper
Sustainable efforts shouldn’t just be about ticking boxes or abiding rules. There are so many opportunities for fashion businesses to give back and to explore more efficient processes for their own production. Some of the biggest pollutants from the fashion industry are cut offs and leftovers. The amount of waste created is truly signicant. The European Union textile industry alone generates around 16 million tonnes of textile waste annually (European Commission, 2017), which ends up in landll or has to be incinerated. As phenomenal as this amount of waste is, there’s actually a lot you can do with textile waste.
We found a way to reuse our cotton leftovers by making our own handcrafted cotton paper.
Our wash care cards and business cards are all made with cotton leftover pieces that are discarded from our stitching units. We separate the cotton from the other fabrics (as only the cotton can be recycled), and turn this into paper. Recycling material is a lengthy and highly specialised process, and it has been honed and perfected in India over centuries.
An increasing number of startups and brands in India are now nding new ways to stop textile waste, and as our own production is mainly in India we decided to join this waste revolution. Especially considering that we have access to all the tools needed to transform our textile waste into high quality recycled paper. And best of all, the paper is incredibly beautiful. Not only is it soft, you can see and feel the pulp that has been carefully pressed and shaped into unique and stunning pieces. Each piece is made by hand using traditional techniques, which have been passed down through generations.
How is our handmade paper produced?
There are many different ways for creating handmade paper. Below is our technique which has been used for hundreds of years in India, where our beautiful textiles are created.
1. The first step is to separate the cotton fibres from other fabrics, a manual process requiring enormous skill and patience.
2. The pieces are then shredded into fibres.
3. The cotton fibres are then soaked in water for several days, until they become a fine pulp, which can then be processed into paper.
4. In a large vat of water, two artisans press a layer of pulp in a wooden frame, backed by a tightly stretched cotton sheet, which will mould the pulp into a thick sheet of rough-edged paper. The excess water is pressed out and a sheet of paper is born.
5. If the original material is coloured, it will now be bleached into a uniform, cream-coloured paper. Once it is semi-dry, it can be dyed any colour, or embellished with special effects, such as marbling.
6. Lastly, the sheets are hung out on washing lines to dry, a spectacular vista of endless vertical sheets, blowing and drying in open air.
Every step of the paper-making process is made by hand, and compared to a traditional paper mill, the handmade paper manufacturing process uses much less energy per ton of paper produced. It therefore contributes far less towards the pollution of our Planet.
Handmade in India using age-old techniques that have been passed down through generations. The paper is incredibly soft and perfect for ink printing and calligraphy. Instead of cutting down trees, we use the leftovers from our stitching units to create beautifully unique and luxurious paper for our wash care cards and business cards.