We all know there are lots of chemicals in fabric these days. Sometimes you can smell them in there. Keep reading for a brief outline about cotton and what happens to it before harvesting till when it ends up at the shop.
Cotton is a natural fiber grown in fields. Historically it has been hard to find its origin but it has proven to date back to 3,000BC in India and 2,300BC in Peru.
To transform cotton bolls from the plant into the fabric we sew into our quilts takes a long journey that requires the assistance of chemicals.
Todays cotton plants are genetically controlled to enhance their production. At harvest time plants are often sprayed with an exfoliant to cause the leaves to shrivel and fall off.
As quilters it is good to have a general understanding of how the fabrics we use are made, what the chemicals in fabric are, and why they are used. This then gives us a better understanding of how we should care for them. This allows us to treat each piece of fabric in the best possible way and reduce any damage.
There are a couple of simple tests one can do to determine whether a fabric has excess chemicals or the fabric was not finished well.
There are a lot of chemicals used and though I prefer that it wasn't so it is good to know that there are things you can do to minimise their contact with our skin. Being informed is always a good way to go so you can make choices that are best for you & your family.