I’ve been using Tom’s of Maine toothpaste and deodorant for years. Their line of eco-friendly personal care products is amazing, and because they don’t use many of the chemicals and additives that big name brands use, their products are also very healthy and safe.
Another thing I like about Tom’s is that the company itself is sustainable and socially conscious.
So, what does all this have to do with eco fashion?
Well, I just found out that Tom’s of Maine has started a sustainable wool clothing company called Ramblers Way.
This new clothing line gets big points in my book for several reasons.
1. It’s Humane
Ramblers Way doesn’t outsource their wool for this new clothing line. These sheep are raised on a farm in Kennebunk, Maine.
Right now, the herd is small enough so that they can bring them in each night for warmth, and to protect against predation. As the herd grows, however, Ramblers Way admits they won’t always be able to do this. But they will continue to herd them into a central corral at night for warmth and protection.
Ramblers Way also says that they use gentle combs and humane handling systems when fleecing and sorting the sheep.
2. It’s Sustainable
Ramblers Way sources everything they need domestically. They use an environmental enzyme to wash their fleeces, and their packaging is minimal and recyclable.
Their farm trucks are fueled with biofuels, and the farm generates its own renewable energy. Yahoo!
Ramblers Way is making superfine, super lush wool garments. The wool they’re using is such high quality that it feels nothing like the wool most of us are used to. It’s wicking, it’s breathable, and it’s incredibly soft.
The superfine American Rambouillet wool is so soft that they’re using it to make underwear and camisoles. Yep, think cashmere-softness here.
Right now, most of their line is very simple (but still stylish) undergarments. Camis, Henely long sleeve shirts, underwear, long johns, etc. These can be used for hiking, biking, camping, or even to wear at home or under your work clothes.
I’m excited about Tom’s new line of eco clothing.
My only question, which hasn’t been answered on the Ramblers Way site, is their winter shearing practices. Most sheep are sheared year-round for their wool. In cold climates, this means they’re left without a warm coat in the middle of winter. Many sheep suffer and die of exposure because of this practice.
I’m planning on writing Ramblers Way to see if they’re going to engage in this. When I find out, I’ll be sure to let you know!
Filed under: Eco Fashion on March 30th, 2010