Hessian, burlap, jute - fun facts!

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Hessian, burlap, jute - fun facts!

I am always looking to enrich my choices in the fabric I use both through selecting artists who will receive payment (royalties, commissions etc.) on the sales of their designs as well as keeping the environment at the forefront of my choices.  

With NSWs big supermarkets imposing their own bans on single-use plastic bags I felt I needed to investigate different fabrics and the impacts they have on the environment, both from a manufacturing and waste perspective.

I have concluded that hessian/burlap/jute is the more environmentally friendly fabric and so will be moving forth with my new product range utilising this very interesting invention.  Here are some fun facts!

Colourful handmade hessian supermarket shopping bags by Crafty T


10 Fun Facts (by TheBurlapBagLady)

  1.   It originated from India which it was used for rope and paper production
  2.  The English brought it to Britain where the Scottish first spun it into yarn
  3. Bangladesh and India are the worlds largest producers of Burlap, closely followed by China, Myanmar, Brazil and Thailand
  4. Burlap was traditionally used as backing for carpet and linoleum
  5. Burlap is resistant to condensation and that is why it is used as shipping sacks for produce
  6. Burlap’s durable qualities make it suitable for varied uses such as erosion protection, sandbags, seedling protection and weed matting
  7. Burlap is often used in the furniture industry to give support inside couches and chairs
  8. Burlap was commonly used to camouflage helmets in World War II
  9.  Burlap is often used as a mask in Horror movies
  10.  Burlap is now very popular in interior design.

Kids Wiki can teach us a little bit more about jute:

Jute is a vegetable fibre. It is very cheap to produce, and its production levels are similar to that of cotton. It is a bast fibre, like hemp, and flax. Coarse fabrics made of jute are called hessian, or burlap in America. Like all natural fibres, Jute is biodegradable."Jute" is the name of the plant or fibre that is used to make burlap, Hessian or gunny cloth.

The jute plant is easily grown in tropical countries like Bangladesh and India. Ninety percent of world's jute is harvested in Bangladesh and the rest in India. Jute is less expensive than cotton, but cotton is better for quality clothes. Jute is used to make various products: packaging materials jute bags, sacks to expensive carpets, espadrilles, sweaters etc. it is obtained from the bark of the jue plant

Jute has been shown to exist in the Bronze Age in Iran, for example.

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