Fibershed: A Case Study In Sourcing Textiles Locally

Via Scoop.itPermaculture Design Review

The garments were primarily hand-constructed. The rural region proved to be rich in raw materials: word-class alpaca, the finest merino wools, color-grown cottons, and the softest angora. The design talent from the urban sector was abundant in skills, experience, and passion. Many of the essential elements necessary to engage a bioregional supply were in place: the animals, plants and people…   We continually surprised ourselves with our ability to devise local solutions when faced with challenges. In response to the toxicity of coal-tar-based synthetic dyes and a desire to grow our own colors, an indigo and coreopsis farm was started. These two species provided us with blue and orange. Other colors were sourced from native, wild, and naturalized plant species that were found throughout the gardens and ranches within the region…   The project specifically matched a local artisan with a local farmer to collaborate to make a garment. During this process, we identified our skill base and mapped many of the farms in the region. As we documented ourselves, we identified our collective reliance upon one important nexus within the community: the last remaining wool mill, the place where fiber becomes yarn…