It is obvious that natural fibers have been used for ages to produce textiles. Nowadays our natural environment is full of synthetic textile waste so researchers, scientists, and designers are looking up for some new ways and sources to produce clothes.

It could seem unimaginable but wouldn’t it be great to reduce the amount of polyester, acrylic, nylon, acetate, spandex, latex and other all massively sold by high street stores? All those toxins which affect our health and the health of the planet are not indifferent at all. Edible sources of fiber are already well-known to a public audience. Various exhibitions presented the latest discoveries in that field. Some of the examples you can see below:


Bananas have already been used in Japan in 13th-century to make a fabric similar to cotton. In 2014 banana silk fiber came to the general public with a dress made entirely of dried banana leaves creation of Ditta Sandico.

Banana leaf


Nettle usually becomes popular in times of crisis. For example during WWI in central Europe countries because of limited possibilities to import cotton, the clothes, including German uniforms were made of nettle. In the second half of the twentieth century, the USSR produced nettle ropes and fabrics for dressings.

nettle slippersNettle slippers


Citrus fiber

Citrus fiber is the first fiber made of citrus fruit. It is silky in appearance and biodegradable.

citrus fiberCitrus fiber


Fermented alcohol

There is also a new fabric created from the fermentation of alcoholic beverages. The fabric is red for the red wine, translucent to white and amber colour for beer.

beer dressFermented beer-dress


Coffee is used to recycle coffee grounds for fabric but also extract a high concentration of essential coffee oil which is re-used in textiles and also can be used in cosmetics.

coffee dressCoffee dress at Textifood in Milano



Fashion designers have been experimenting with other organic sources to produce clothing.  Suzanne Lee was inspired to design from bacteria which grows on Kombucha a healthy drink, a mixture of bacteria and yeast, originated in China in 220 BC.

bacteria clothBio culture clothing designed by Suzanne Lee


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