Posts Tagged ‘Bamboo Clothing’
When Bambu Batu, the House of Bamboo, opened nine years ago (yes, our birthday is coming up on Feb.20), we were the only shop anywhere to offer such a wide variety of bamboo clothing. In 2006, the bamboo clothing industry was still in its earliest stage of infancy. Nobody walking into Bambu Batu had ever seen bamboo clothing before. Seeing the looks on people’s faces when they touched a bamboo towel or a pair of bamboo socks for the first time was truly delightful.
Now it’s 2015, and our selection of bamboo clothing is more impressive than ever, as we continue to offer the widest variety of bamboo products of any store in the land. Those who scoffed at us when we first opened our doors on Grand Avenue in Grover Beach, writing off bamboo sheets and shirts as a passing novelty, have been proven wrong. And conversely, those who love the feeling and wearability of bamboo clothing and clamored for more of it, have all been richly rewarded.
Today the selection of brands and colors and weaves of bamboo fabrics and textiles is more diverse and higher in quality than ever before. But in spite this growth and progress, the mission and purpose here at Bambu Batu has not changed one iota. We remain committed to providing the best quality natural fiber clothing and textiles, made in accordance with the highest standards of fair labor practices, at the most reasonable prices. Unlike a lot of bamboo clothiers who have jumped on the bandwagon in recent years, seeing an opportunity in a growing market, charging prices that keep bamboo clothes out of reach for the average middle class family, Bambu Batu remains a family-owned business that makes the relationships with our customers a top priority.
Spring has sprung once again. It’s fast approaching that time of year when less clothing is more desirable and brighter colors attract the eye. Dreamsacks, one of our favorite companies, has now evolved in to Yala, and with that evolution comes some exciting new designs for spring and summer.
Here are my three favorite new goodies that we have in stock now from Yala.
3. What’s old is new again, with a new shade to look upon. The lovely and youthful Clara tunic now comes in a bright and cheerful yet tasteful Raspberry.
2. Who says spring is no time for scarves? You never know when a spring breeze is likely to come ruffle you up and make you regret the decision to wear that tanktop and mini skirt. But wait, thankfully you have your brand new Pashbu Scarf (maybe in that delicious new shade of yellow called Limoncello) with flirty frayed edges. Just light enough for spring, and just enough to keep you warm, just in case.
1. If you like a top that you can wear to your favorite summer outing, or just around the house, then you’ll love the brand new Gathered Samantha Top. With a hip hugging waist and a flatteringly loose mid section, this lovely new work comes in four different colors: Raspberry, Jade, Deep Purple and Black.
There are plenty of new and exciting things to see here at Bambu Batu. Come spring forward with us!
Today marks the last day of summer for those of us basking in the warmth of the northern hemisphere. And not a moment too soon for the people of Russia and most of the US where this summer’s warmth turned into a wave of blistering, deadly heat. Yet while the rest of the world roasted away and corral reefs were bleached into oblivion, here in California the summer never really arrived. We’ve had nothing but mild breezes and temperate sunshine, but the Indian Summer still lies in wait, poised for a late season attack.
So what’s all this aberrant meteorological prognostication have to do with the house of bamboo? Don’t worry, I’m getting to that. Just as soon as my morning typing fingers have a chance to thaw out. In the meantime, don’t let your defenses down, because this weekend looks likes it’s gonna be a hot one, and bamboo might actually be one of your best defense.
In addition to bamboo clothing’s cozy breathability and superior thermal regulating properties, the material also provides an excellent shield against the sun’s harmful UV rays. A number of independent studies have all confirmed that bamboo fabric can effectively block out more than 90 perfect of the sun’s ultra-violet radiation. This makes bamboo an ideal for babies, those with especially sensitive skin, and anyone concerned about the increasing rates of skin cancer associated with prolonged sun exposure.
We are consistently impressed by the number of customers who tell us that bamboo is one of the only fabrics they can wear because of various allergies, skin conditions and/or chemical sensitivities. Check UV-protection as just one more advantage of bamboo in a world facing severe climate changes.
Song of the Day: “Indian Summer” by The Doors
Bambu Batu, in its undying quest to hold itself accountable and socially responsible, is very pleased to be adding an assortment of Certified Fair Trade bamboo products to its already impressive selection of eco-conscious fabrics and housewares.
In that very same spirit, Bambu Batu will also be participating in a Fair Trade Christmas Market on Saturday, Dec. 8, in the old Pier One building in downtown San Luis Obispo. (I believe that’s 848 Montery St. — next door to the old HempShak.) The Copelands are donating the space for the event, which is being organized by the SLO Fair Trade Coalition (SLOFTC).
The SLOFTC and the Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club are also co-sponsoring a showing of “Maquilapolis: City of Factories,” at The Steynberg Gallery, 1531 Monterey St., SLO, Saturday, Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. Don’t miss this chilling documentary on factory exploitation and maquiladora madness!
(The following story was written by me in the spring of 2007, and appeared in a number of local publications.)
Suddenly it seems like everybody’s talking about sustainability and renewable resources. And well they should. After 30 years of hot air about global warming and peak oil, the environment is finally talking a lead role in the American political drama. Solar energy is radiating across California and the nation, organic produce is spreading like pollen in the spring, and alternatives to disappearing hardwood and pesticide-rich cotton are drawing more interest than ever.
One remarkable resource that’s recently come out of the woodwork and into the spotlight is bamboo. A paragon of sustainability, bamboo is finding its way into construction, flooring, clothing, towels and linens. And unlike so many progressive alternatives, bamboo is absolutely affordable. It doesn’t require another 20 years of research or legislation, and it doesn’t demand a major initial investment to be recouped a decade from now. Bamboo is economically viable today.
Words like renewable and sustainable get thrown around a lot, and they’re likely to cause some misunderstanding. Even petroleum is a renewable resource; it just might take a few hundred thousand years to replenish itself. Redwood trees renew themselves much faster, in just a few centuries. As long as we don’t harvest them any faster than they grow, they could be considered sustainable. Further up on the scale, we have annual crops like hemp, which can grow up to 12 feet in a single season, with minimal crop rotation and little or no chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Easily maintained and renewed each year: that’s sustainable.
Then there’s bamboo. A division of the grass family, with as many as 2000 varieties, bamboo flourishes in virtually every climate. It is a notoriously vigorous grower; some varieties grow as much as 3 feet a day in the growing season — although a few inches a day is more typical. Bamboo reaches maturity within five years, and, as a grass, requires no replanting. Anyone who’s ever tried removing unwanted bamboo knows this characteristic all too well. When bamboo is cut down, it just comes right back, and stronger. If there’s a more readily renewable resource out there, I’d like to know about it.
The vast majority of commercial bamboo comes from China, Indonesia, and Southeast Asia. Indeed, they’ve been using the plant in that part of the world for both food and shelter for millennia. (They’ve even identified bamboo as having magical and mythical properties.) Countless varieties also thrive throughout Africa and the Americas, even in temperate and hardy climates.
Bamboo’s natural vigor makes it sustainable, plentiful, and inexpensive. And its physical strength and diversity translate directly into its versatility as a natural resource. In addition to all of its traditional uses for things like chopsticks and furniture, bamboo today is pressed and laminated as a superior lumber alternative. Stronger even than oak or maple, bamboo has become the first choice in flooring. And in the past couple years, its price has come to rival that of traditional hardwood. This pressed bamboo is also becoming wildly popular for cutting boards and kitchenware because of the way it resists scratching and repels moisture.
Bamboo clothing and fabrics, however, may hold the plant’s greatest promise. Until you’ve seen it yourself, the touch of bamboo is hard to imagine, and difficult to believe. Beat into a pulp and spun into thread, bamboo fiber yields an amazingly soft, anti-bacterial and anti-microbial material. Remarkably soft and absorbent bamboo towels are simply exquisite. And, unlike conventional cotton, bamboo grows prolifically without fertilizers, pesticides or defoliants.
In the quest for a global panacea, bamboo might not necessarily save the planet; but in terms of renewability and sustainability, it’s certainly one of the most promising natural resources we have. And not just promising — bamboo is available today, and affordable. No longer must one pay a premium to support a cause or to make an environmental statement. At last, you can do what’s right for the earth, what’s right for yourself, and what’s right for your budget.
Bamboo fabric is a radical new material that promises to revolutionize the clothing and textile industry. For cost, comfort and ecology, bamboo fiber clothing has no equal.But how do they do it?
Basically, the bamboo stalks are crushed and pulped, and the plant cellulose is extracted and converted into “rayon.” But while traditional viscose rayon relies on caustic chemicals to convert man-made celluose, bamboo rayon employs a new eco-friendly method that preserves the natural characteristics of the bamboo (celluose) without the use of toxic chemicals.
The organic solvent amine oxide (N-methylmorpholine-N-oxide) has been in use since the 1990s for converting raw wood fiber into useful textiles. Bamboo’s abundance and renewability make it an ideal candidate for this process, and the non-toxic process is entirely in line with the ecological philosophy behind bamboo.
The end result is a sumptuously soft eco-fiber fashioned from organically grown bamboo, not just comfortable, but also hypoallergenic, anti-microbial and anti-bacterial.Why Bamboo Fiber Clothing?
Conventional cotton is known to be one of the most pesticide intensive crops on the planet, as it is susceptible to a number of pests (particularly when grown in monoculture). And the defoliants used to strip cotton of its leaves before harvesting are some of the deadliest man-made chemicals available. (see Agent Orange )
Other synthetic fibers like nylon, polyester and traditional rayon are derived from petroleum, and so, of course, are those pesky fertilizers, pesticides and defoliants. Freeing ourselves from these industrial fibers represents one more step towards freeing ourselves from fossil fuel dependency.
Bamboo, hemp, and organic cotton all offer excellent alternatives to the highly-toxic conventional textiles, and the future of sustainable agriculture depends not on a single panacea, but on a healthy diversity of alternatives.
For the widest variety of bamboo clothing and bamboo bedding you’ll ever find under one roof, please visit Bambu Batu, in person or online. In business since 2007, no other bamboo store can touch us for quality, consistency or experience.