So Ryan & I began the workings on our handmade Christmas today & I was actually really excited to find that A.C. Moore has bamboo pillow forms! The reason this excites me so is that bamboo is a very earth friendly product due to the quickened rate at which it grows. Actually a member of the grass family, this plant sprouts up at an incredible rate & thus, it doesn’t have as much of an impact on the environment when it is farmed — it’ll just pop right back up from where you chopped it down! This is the fastest growing plant on the planet so don’t be shy to buy as much of it as you can find!
Bamboo fabrics are also incredibly soft & breathable. Pay attention, however, to see whether or not it is actually bamboo, or if it is “rayon from bamboo”. There is quite a difference. The benefit of bamboo fabrics are many — not only does the plant grow quickly & is just as soon harvested, but it also requires no pesticides or chemicals during the growing process (so it is therefore organic), it also has antibacterial, deodorizing & anti-fungal qualities so it doesn’t need washing as often (saving your energy & water). Here comes to sad news; there are two different ways of processing bamboo into fibers used for fabrics. One of them requires no chemicals & is an excellent process, but the other, which is more prevalent, involves the use of many different chemicals, some of which can be very dangerous. I believe the fabric produced from this process is usually referred to as “rayon from bamboo”, but it’s hard to tell from the limited research I’ve done online, & I’ll have to continue looking into it. The other sketchy thing about bamboo, is that it is usually processed overseas, thus leading to relaxed labor laws (ie. sweatshops, or child labor in many cases). Just because a company’s products are “Made in U.S.A” doesn’t mean the bamboo was also processed here. There are, however, a few qualifications you can look for to make sure you are getting a socially conscious product. The LA Times blog here goes into depth on the subject without getting boring.
Anyway, if you’re ever in the market for pillow forms you should definitely check out Nature-Fil by Fairfield which is Earth friendly, & a portion of the proceeds are used to support environmental & ecological initiatives!
For more information on bamboo as a renewable resource check out the following sites: