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    Journal — sustainability

    New :: Winter's Journey

    New :: Winter's Journey

    Juicy textures. Sublime earthy tones. Wabi-sabi.
    Cotton, Hemp, Jute... three natural, sustainable, versatile and durable fibers compile our Winter's Journey collection. This collection is meant to ground you, and as always, deliver beautiful imperfectly perfect vibes.

    From Hiroki/Dusty Mauve to Rustic Solids/Olive, Winter's Journey favors enduring timeless style and a sustainable lifestyle over passing trends. 
    Come walk with us on this Winter's Journey.

    C O T T O N  /  Hiroki
    Classic and bold, our Hiroki is designed with versatility in mind. Hiroki is inspired by the natural grid and order of traditional Japanese tatami flooring. The name originates from Japanese meaning big, great brightness or big, great tree. It is also home to a remote village in Japan and to us, this is what the fabric collection reveals. A quaint and old-world connection to nature, who is, still our favorite designer.

    A take on the classic stripe, and a little sibling of sorts to our Cusco Stripe, this textile pairs effortlessly with any interior. 

    H E M P  /  Rustic Solids
    A more textured, wabi-sabi rendition of our Raw Solids, the Rustic Solids collection embraces the striation of color in the natural hemp yarn. This movement and slubby texture adds a raw, refined, and earthly character to any space. 

    J U T E  /  Ikigai
    Ikigai (pronounced ee-key-guy) is a Japanese concept that refers to having a meaningful direction or purpose in life. The relaxed weave and slubby, juicy textures of this jute & cotton blend speaks to our connection with others and with nature. Sustainably made, biodegradable, and beautifully crafted, our hearts are at ease.


    Need memos? Email

    Next Level :: Why Handwoven?

    When should you specify handloom woven fabrics? We've broken it down to a few key points...

    Natural fibers, sustainably made
    Sustainability encompasses more than just producing using eco-friendly also means applying ethical business practices, where workers are treated with dignity, and paid fair wages. Our fabrics also pay attention to the "closed loop system" meaning everything springs to life, gets used then put back into the gets put back into the earth and can bio-degrade within 2-6 months.

    Imperfectly perfect textures
    The irregularities and nuances found in handwoven textiles is what makes them unique and beautiful. The perfectly imperfect adds lots of character and texture making each handwoven fabric truly a work of art.

    Stocked, ready to ship
    We all love a stocked item. With our handwoven textiles, all fabrics are stocked in our Dallas, Texas showroom and ready to ship! This accessibility helps us promote a conscious, beautiful life at home, without the lead time. And, did you know? Most of our fabrics can be Stain, Flame, or Outdoor treated!

    Handloom weaving began as early as the 10th century. And even now, all you need is a wooden loom (what a beauty in itself) that takes no electricity! It is a completely manual process and a craft that is passed down generations. Our textiles help artisans continue doing what they know and love, allowing them to sustain their families and villages. There is a strong cultural and economic impact that is created by using our textiles. Now that's something any client would want to support! 

    Handwoven textiles are made with history, heritage, and heart. They are slow textiles and what we love to call Impact textiles...their impact is felt on an entire village. Imagine that :)

    Designing for Well-being with Material Driven

    Designing for Well-being with Material Driven

    I had the pleasure of meeting Purva Chawla, Founder and Partner at Material Driven, a vast library of innovative, sustainable materials from cutting edge brands. Adele Orcajada, also a Partner, operates from London, while Purva recently made Dallas her homebase. Let's take a look at how they bridge the gap between designer and maker. 

    Tell us when Material Driven was formed and the premise behind it.
    Material Driven came to life in 2016. At that time our intention was to broadcast the innovation that was taking place with materials and their making. We were showcasing designers and manufacturers around the world, particularly in Europe then, who were inventing unique products and processes used in interiors and architecture.
    After Adele and I joined forces in London, our services expanded. Now we also provide consultancy and design services to our clients, helping them choose better sustainable materials.

    What services do you provide to the Trade?

    We provide consultancy work to designers, architects and clients in the Trade. Our consultancy revolves around Material Research, Market Intelligence, Material Sourcing, Supplier Introductions, Trends Insights and Product Development. We also work with them to create material-focused installations like our recent work for the AC Hotel by Marriott in Washington DC (image below).

    Walk us through how a designer or architect would work with you…
    Designers and architects come to us in two ways --The first is when they are broadly seeking inspiration and innovation for their projects, or trying to make material choices that are more natural or healthy. The second is when they have a very specific brief and are looking for a direct solution.

    Let's say a designer comes to us looking for sources for a hotel lobby installation, we offer them up to 30 new and untapped sources that would fit the bill. It could be an install that needs acoustical panels to absorb sound or it could be purely visual. We understand their needs and present samples accordingly. We provide pricing, lead times, limitations, end of life information and more. Eventually, this leads to a final set of materials which they can start to roll out in their projects, and we introduce them to the manufacturers or makers of these materials.

    If the designer has a very specific brief or need, we offer them a short list of contenders, samples and all necessary information. Once the designer has made some choices, we conduct introductions between designer and maker.

    Finally, as we are a team of designers ourselves, some clients bring us onboard to take projects from concept to delivery. So whether it is art installations, or standalone products or elements of interior architecture, we help the architect, designer or developer conceptualize it with innovative materials, and then take responsibility for the build, installation and delivery as well.

    You have locations in London and Dallas... how are the two audiences different?
    What opportunities do you see in Dallas in terms of educating designers and the materials you can connect them with?

    The most obvious difference between both audiences is how much or how little materials are being talked about. In London, we are one of 5-6 agencies who specialize in materials consulting, and everyone, from universities, to brands, to large architectural firms, and trade shows constantly has their eye on the subject and is talking about it. This is not the case in Dallas yet.

    The other, interesting shift I noticed during my years in London was how architectural and interior design studios, among other clientele, started to first and foremost view materials from a problem-solving lens, rather than aesthetic and budget factors. Materials are chosen to mitigate challenges such as pollution, waste, resource scarcity, health and well-being. In Dallas it's more about synthetic materials because the focus is primarily on aesthetic. But that presents an opportunity for us to start having larger conversations and educating designers here.

    The other clear opportunity in Dallas is just how many incredible firms are based and headquartered here, so it's just a matter of getting their attention and aiding them in material choices and outcomes.

    What materials/brands are you most excited about these days?
    Ah, so many! I’ll have to limit myself to three:
    1. LivingCap -- They have a collection called Mixcycling, made with organic waste, but so ripe for use in packaging and product design space, and at massive scale.
    2. Foresso is a Timber Terrazzo material, made with wood and plaster waste, among other recycled content. It's great for interior architecture and flooring. The narrative and environmental footprint from this material is a big win.
    3. Giles Miller Studio creates highly sensory bespoke surfaces and sculptures using a growing palette of ceramic, metallic, wood and stone-based material modules.

    Material Driven can be reached here.

    Natural Fibers in the Home

    Natural Fibers in the Home

    A renowned design firm in L.A. recently told me that clients on the West coast are hiring environmental consultants to work closely with the interior designer and architect because they want their homes to be natural, responsible spaces. What does this mean? Why is it important? How are natural fibers better?

    Sourced from nature, historically

    Natural fibers come from plants (cotton, hemp, flax, jute etc) or animals (wool, alpaca, silk, etc). Since the dawn of civilization, cloth, rope and twine have been made from some of these very sources.
    We get our natural fibers from small farms and co-ops, providing sustenance to many farming families.

    Better for your health
    A friend of mine who has auto-immune disease said since her diagnosis, she has changed her diet, her skincare products, supplements, her wardrobe and even the upholstery in her home. Natural fibers "breathe" and are better for those with sensitive skin.
    Our fabrics are all natural fibers using cotton, linen, silk, hemp and jute. At this time, we have one fabric (Sahara) which has a metallic Lurex thread.

    Less toxic
    Did you know acrylic has been linked to cancer by the , polyester, rayon, nylon, spandex etc are made by a process called polymerization? Polymerization is a process where chemical fibers are joined together to create the fabric. It takes numerous highly toxic chemicals to create these fabrics. These synthetic fabrics are essentially plastic.
    Our fabrics only use natural fibers and many can be washed in your daily cycle. The dyes we use are certified OEKO-TEX and azo-free.

    End of life
    A big topic in textiles is "end of life." Basically, is it biodegradable? How long will the fabric take to decompose? When cut into smaller pieces, cotton takes around 5 months to decompose. Linen a few weeks. What about acrylic? 20-200 years! Click here to see how long various fabrics take.
    Our fabrics are 100% biodegradable.

    A holistic approach
    The Natural Home has a certain vibrational quality that's humming with good chi. That good energy is created from various things - good flow and placement of objects (feng shui), bringing nature indoors to create a feeling of well-being (biophilia), using natural non-toxic materials for furnishings and surfaces. Natural fibers fits this holistic approach of designing a home for well-being.
    We pride ourselves on creating beautiful textures with natural fibers and we hope you bring them into your and your client's homes... upholster with them, use them for drapery, entertain with our table linens, snuggle with our pillows. Surround yourself with our textiles and you'll see why we are committed to the natural way of life.