Published on November 4th, 2008 | by Kelly Rand


Fabulous Fabrics: Furnature

Houndstooth check fabric Tasked with creating a non-toxic couch back in 1994, the company Furnature was born. Created specifically for those suffering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, a sensitivity or severe allergy to pollutants, Furnature has continued to be sought out by those sufferers and those of us who prefer to live a toxin free life.

Beyond the couches, futons, ottomans and bed frames, Furnature offers some interesting non-toxic fabrics.

The company offers a line of 100% organic cotton weaves found in a Houndstooth Check (pictured), Oblong Dobby, Herringbone, a Textured Weave, a Finer Texture, a Washed Cotton Chenille and Dimpled Chenille Texture. They also offer a couple of cotton/bamboo blends in a Diamond Dobby pattern and Greige Herringbone. They even have a pretty decent looking organic cotton velvet, something that you definitely don’t see every day!

They also offer a line of 14 colors of cotton twill. What is interesting about this fabric is that it contains no sizing or chemical finishes. And they claim that the twill and any of their other fabrics in stock can be detoxed with their SafeWash.

From their website:

Our SafeWash system removes unpleasant fabric finishes, such as Scotchguard and Teflon, and dye odors from almost any fabric of natural fibers or blends of natural and synthetics.

SafeWash entails washing the fabric repeatedly in a bath of baking soda and then of vinegar. The treated surfaces can be broken down and removed through this process, rendering the fabric free of these toxins. The baking soda and vinegar also neutralizes dye smells, too.

It is an interesting concept, washing the toxins out of treated fabric. It does seem like an unnecessary step, though, and could be avoided if the fabrics weren’t treated in the first place. But for now, for anyone suffering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity or wants toxic free fabric, Furnature seems to be a good choice.

[Image from Furnature website]

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About the Author

Kelly covers visual arts in and around Washington, DC for DCist and is editor of Crafting a Green World. Kelly has also been published by Bust Magazine and you can find her byline at Indie Fixx and Etsy’s Storque and has taught in Etsy’s virtual lab on the topic of green crafting. Kelly helps organize Crafty Bastards: Arts and Crafts Fair, one of the largest indie craft fairs on the east coast and has served on the Craft Bastard’s jury since 2007. Kelly is also co-founder of Hello Craft a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the advancement of independent crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly resides in Washington, D.C. and believes that handmade will save the world.

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