au naturale

This is our last (regular) blog! That is so crazy, the semester has flown by. Just as a side note, I think it’s only fair to tell you that I am currently writing this after having not slept last night so I genuinely hope this all makes some sort of sense to you. To kick this off, I’ll have you all know that I am all about nature (except bugs – I hate them). I love products made from nature, natural food, holistic medicine, and being in nature. So naturally I was shocked to read that the natural fibers do not always trump synthetic fibers and products. Epiphany! This concept is quite similar to that of the BedZED Project – where they wanted to build housing from only sustainable and recycled materials. They discovered that it’s not always beneficial to use reclaimed materials since the process to recycle them is just as harmful as creating new materials. In this week’s reading, the author discusses the rigorous and environmentally taxing process of harvesting cotton to create textiles that can be deemed as 100% cotton compared to creating synthetic materials. It’s all very ironic to me. The epiphany would be that you really just have to do your homework (research) before you make a decision on natural or synthetic.

Although I am interior design and I don’t make many choices about fibers in my field, I think this is still relevant and useful for me since I need to know the processes the acquire all of the materials. It will be good for me to know all of the background information on brand new, reclaimed/recycled or local materials that a client may specify. I have to know how to weigh the costs in getting those materials to my client.

Knowing what I know now, what kinds of synthetic materials can be used for ID and how do you make a ‘sustainable’ decision in choosing one synthetic material over another?

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