Sustainability was an often-discussed topic at this year's Heimtextil show and while organizers and designers acknowledged that the textile industry still has a long way to go toward being truly green, for the first time they are seeing tangible steps in the right direction. A serene and beautifully designed exhibition of green textiles was a highlight of the fair in Frankfurt.
The unique space was designed by the stijlinstituut of Amsterdam and featured raw wood, concrete, swaths of white cloth and playful fields of pinwheels and oversized balloons. Sustainability in textile design encompasses many different ideas, from Fairtrade cottons grown by farmers whose living and working conditions meet higher international standards to FSC guidelines that ensure responsible forestry. Especially unique were examples of bark cloth (images 4 & 5 above), a richly textured material made from the bark of East African fig trees.
More information on sustainable fabrics can be found on the Heimtextil website.
Images: Sarah Rainwater