Fabric of the Earth  

Gaurav Jain’s Orange Tree experiments with plant-based kala cotton, orange peel and banana fibre to make its home décor line more sustainable  

Published: 11th June 2023 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th June 2023 10:03 PM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

Recently, a new fashion showstopper emerged on global runways. Not a super model, not a design prodigy, but an innovative fabric initiative—Reborn-China Fibre Zero Carbon Action 2023. It is said to be the world’s first platform that identifies and promotes sustainable textile products. Twenty-six enterprises have already signed up for it, indicating the demand for such fabrics. 

Closer home, Gaurav Jain, creative director and founder of Orange Tree, a global furniture and lighting solutions store based in Jodhpur, is also doing something on similar lines. His 20-year-old brand has been supplying sustainable materials to global brands such as Zara and Mango for their home décor range for the past decade. Now, it has introduced the fabrics for Indian clientele through its physical store in Hyderabad. 

Zeroing in on ‘plant-positive’ fibres that go beyond jute and khadi, Jain’s focus is on sourcing and making eco-friendly, breathable material for curtains, table cloths, runners and bed covers using kala cotton, hemp, aloe vera, banana and orange peel fibres.

Explaining the process of transforming these products into fabric, Jain says kala cotton is a type of organic crop that is entirely rain-fed. It does not require any fertiliser or pesticides, making it eco-friendly. Orange cotton (made out of peels) is made by spinning the cellulose extract from the waste that would otherwise be discarded.

The cloth is soft, cuddly and strong. It also drapes beautifully, and is anti-wrinkle and environment-friendly. Likewise, bamboo is grown organically as it requires no pesticides to mature, and biodegrades quickly. Bamboo textile also contains antibacterial qualities and retains durability after multiple washes. Highly water-absorbent, it has a quick drying quality.

Among all these, banana fabric, created from the outer lining of the peels, is among the most luxurious. Its silk-like feel and cotton-like durability makes it one of the best materials to create long-lasting and quality products. “Experimenting with sustainable materials is part of our design idiom. In our Toshi collection of furniture, we have married cement with solid wood.

Similarly, our lighting collection uses organic materials such as papier-mâché, cane and bamboo. Even our manufacturing unit has solar-based power consumption and water harvesting mechanisms to ensure we are not wasting our resources,” Jain says. Clearly, going green is the only way forward.


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