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F A Q

Prices.
Fabric prices are per running metre, fabric is supplied in one continuous length (very occasionally with larger cuts you may be given it in two pieces with extra given, let us know if that's a problem). Samples and items like teatowels are per unit.

 

Can we buy wholesale ?

YES.
We import from India and Turkey and  China (bamboo viscose) carry very big stocks and are able to supply wholesale to UK or EU, Australasia,USA or mostly everywhere.

  • Just starting?  We would love to help. If you can order around 5o metres let us know and we will look at how we can help you..
  • Starting a shop? Happy to help you startup with wholesale prices and can guide you as to what would be a great range to start with. Buy samples first and then we can talk and advise.
  • Larger orders. We can offer lower prices for rolls. Rolls are usually 20 to 40m. When you have ordered and seen samples please contact us -  enquiries@organiccotton.biz with your requirements.
  • Do you have an agent?  We don't employ agents. Customers are sometimes puzzled at our very low prices, so how can we be low cost and still be Organic?  Well the main reasons are we don't advertise, we don't have reps or do many trade shows.
  • The main show we attend is Sustainable Angle in January. This showcases many fabrics that aim to be sustainable.

Please see the link below to our wholesale page for more details :-

Wholesale Enquiries

 

Are your fabrics certified?

We ourselves are not certified by GOTS or FTF (Fairtrade foundation).
We are quite small and the way we work makes it impossible to work with large organisations like GOTS who naturally have large overheads and fees to cover the great work they do. So for example if we wanted GOTS certification for our work in Kerala, they would have to send someone to inspect each of the powerloom workers that Genesh works with. They would need a paper trail for the yarn from source to weaver to dying to weaving to shipping and they would also need to audit our work in the UK. This is exactly what they need to do, but not feasible for us when we are working with two hundred different fabrics made by many different weavers.

All the organic cotton yarn we use in Kerala has certification at source.

Mill fabric is different. The cotton weaving mills we work with are all inspected and certified by GOTS. When we receive fabrics from mills, we always ask for a certificate. We can supply you with a copy. This does not mean that we are certified, it does not mean that you can claim GOTS certification.

Our basic muslin fabric is also  Soil Association certified. Soil Association is a UK body allied to GOTS.

Bamboo silk and jersey fabric is from yarn that is Oeko-tex certified and produced in a closed loop system.

Some more information and certification for the Bamboo Silk and Drape from China :-

Bamboo
 

Tencel is also ethically produced under licence and is Oeko-tex certified.


Please ask if you would like to see current certificates - we really don't mind and believe that we should all be aware of the possibility that people may jump on the 'organic' bandwagon without being true to its ideals.

If you are making garments, you can of course say that the fabric is made from certified Organic Cotton or that it is made in a certified mill and you will have the copy certificates to show that.

If you want to be GOTS certified then you would need to register with GOTS and you would have to buy from a weaver who is also certified by GOTS so that the GOTS chain is unbroken. This requires working large scale.

This is a fifteen minute film about GOTS. https://www.global-standard.org/information-centre/gotsfilm.html

This is from our Turkish manufacturing unit.
The origin of cotton is Aegean region of Turkey (Near İzmir). We always obtain our own cotton from contracted farmers. Our spinning house is in Denizli. Depending on the quality or lead times we may use diffirent knitting and dying houses placed in Denizli,İzmir or İstanbul. All facilities have to certificated otherwise it is not possible to give GOTS certificate to the final items (fabric or clothes)
All of the facilities (Farms,Spinning,Knitting or even warehouse where the finished fabrics are controlled and packed) have to carry the responsibilities that certification requires. The certification is made by non-profit certification companies like ICEA or Control union.


 

Are your fabrics Fairtrade?

We don't hold a licence, we are too small, so we don't use the logo unless we are selling fabric imported by a third party who do hold a licence. Fairtrade logo covers the cotton used. It does not cover the actual fabric.      Fairtrade... it's complicated.


We have so far  reinvested all profits into the company or to help the weavers. We distribute a percentage of Net profits to staff and fund local community initiatives.

Fairtrade certification gives small-scale cotton farmers in developing countries the power to improve their livelihoods by ensuring they receive a fair and stable price for their cotton and the additional Fairtrade premium that is used by the farmers for community development projects.   

 

Fair trade policy.

We exist to trade fairly. Ethics is our back bone and we try to be transparent in the way we trade. We only use GOTS certified mills. This means that checks are made to ensure safe working practices etc. We do not beat our partners to the lowest price, we look to find a price that will leave us both happy. We don't charge you the customer the highest price that we can. We try to offer a price that is fair to individual sewers and a lower price to those customers looking to start a business and investing in stock. We do not seek to make the highest profit possible. We seek to be happy and part of that is trading fairly.

 

 

Are the working conditions of your weavers good and are they well paid?

Genesh our partner in Kerala writes (june 2017)...

Yes it is true the living and earning circumstances are entirely different in India.
As per our labor earnings, They are getting in between INR 400/- to  500/- (£6) daily as wages. In addition For Onam up to 16% of their annual wage level is distributing as Bonus + In the Time of Vishu Cash Leave allowances and leave wages are distributing. 
In another side, Three of our weavers control 2 looms hence they are getting more income, as they have more productivity than others and is getting INr1000-1500 per day according to the quality.
These people are like tiny entrepreneurs with Two looms at their home premises. So normally their working system is not affected with sanitation etc.

Most of our weaving section is working like a free institution with one or two looms which is running and controlled by the whole family members. Husband weave, wife wind the pirns, elder parents wind bobbins etc. Wife and Husband inspect the fabric before I am taking from them to take notice how their weave looks like.
Another side we protect some old  women who wind the bobbins. One of the lady's photo I was sending before. They earn 200-300 Rs daily sitting in the portico of the home hearing radio/ TV programs. They are very good people with plenty of experience with yarns. Finer to thicker yarns, Jute and Linens, Curling High twist, viscose  etc.. etc
Most of the people get a pension from the Govt of INr1000.00(Thousand Rupees). They are very Lovely people who express their good Looking attitude with a smile and Love.
I have decided to give a few amount to Mrs.Devaki, the old woman who pose for our photo, and was very happy to ready to take photos. She posed with her grand children that time, and I have taken the two print outs to give them.

 

 

GOTS certified fabrics are made in mills, the mills are inspected and certified and the workers rights are covered in the certification.

 

Are your fabrics sutainable fabrics ?

Our cotton is sustainable. We believe in 'reduce, reuse, recycle'. Growing organic cotton uses crop rotation. Low inputs are sustainable. Land can be farmed year after year without depletion or harm.

  • What is handmade fabric?

    There are two types of handmade fabric. First there are handloom fabrics like Texweave. These use thicker yarns and are made on a wooden loom entirely by hand. They will have small imperfections where the yarns are joined. There are also powerloom fabrics which are made on relativley small electrically operated looms. These run faster and make around 25 metres of fabric in a day. They will also have small imperfections such as knots or shading.

  • What is yarn dying?

    Rather than make fabric and then dye it. Most of our fabric from Kerala is yarn dyed. The yarn is dyed before weaving. This gives a distinctive character but can also lead to small differences in dye shading.

 

Below is from wikipedia about conventional cotton farming.

Main article: Cotton

 

Our bamboo yarns are certified by OEKO-TEX 100 as being free from harmful chemicals.
There's lots to know about bamboo, it grows freely without chemicals but the process of converting it to yarn uses chemicals. The same chemicals are used to make paper and soap. Our bamboo silk and bamboo drape is 100% bamboo viscose. The process for these fabrics is done in a closed loop system. Dyed bamboo is dyed in an OEKO-TEX certified dying unit.

Our jerseys are made in Turkey.  The mill buys the yarn from this company - bamboo - The yarn is Oeko-tex certified. The dyes are Oeko-Tex certified.

Superjersey is made from 46% bamboo viscose and 46% organiccotton and 8% Lycra.

Lycra additives can be a bit problematic for us. Some of our fabrics have up to 8%.

We are unsure whether the organic cotton content in some of our jerseys' balances the Lycra content? A difficult choice for us and for you. We take the view that it is far less harmful to people than conventional cotton growing. Also mixed fibre fabrics are hard to recycle.

I would urge you to research yourself and make your own decision.

 

This is one view of many about about bamboo  viscose, Tencel etc https://oecotextiles.wordpress.com/category/fibers/viscose/


Tencel :- A very sustainable and comfortable fabric made in a closed loop system from Eucalyptus trees. There is a lot on the internet, here is one article - Tencel
and here is another- Tencel

 

We do not use polyester, even polyester that is carefully made, or recycled polyester as this is something we currently struggle with the concept of.

 

 

Are your Dyes Natural?
We have tried 'natural dyes' - that is to say dyes made from vegetable matter. There have been several problems. 1) They are very unstable, they run and fade.2) This can be improved, but only with the use of heavy metal mordents (bad chemical setting agents) 3) They use huge amounts of roots etc - is this a good use of land? There is much to read and know.

We use low impact approved chemical dyes which are efficient and accepted as being safe. GOTS certification covers the dyes that are used in GOTS certified fabrics. Genesh our partner in Kerala uses low impact chemical dyes.

This is Genesh, our partner, explaining the dye system in Kerala.We have visited the dye house.

The dye house is having water disposing system with sludge treatment plant. The polluted water is going through different level of Tanks. In the first tank polluted water is collecting, then it overflows to next level tank filled with sand and stones, then over flows to another tanks adding Alum to purify,  It is in the sixth tank the purified water using to watering the plants. The sludge is dried in sunlight  and it is used as fertilizers.

In Kerala we use Novacron dyes which are made to pass Oeko -Tex standards. Please see the link below for more information on the dyes used :-

Dyes

 

Does your cloth contain chemicals?


We don't use finishing chemicals on our fabrics and our fabrics will be free of harmful pesticides etc as the crop i.e mainly cotton is organically grown.
Dyes are chemical based, but they are tested as being safe - they are called low impact dyes.

All cloth and yarn goes through some sort of sizing or washing-  soap is used, soap is made with Caustic Soda (Sodium Hydroxide)

Linens (Flax) and Bamboo do not normally use pesticides.
We do not have information on clearance fabrics (usually linens) 


Bamboo is made into yarn using Sodium Hydroxide, which is a chemical derived largely from ash and salt so Bamboo does go through a chemical process to make it the yarn.

The bamboo yarn is certified by Oeko-tex as being free from harmful chemicals and our cotton being organic will  not have pesticide residues. We strive for purity.

 

Is your fabric Bleached?

Oxybleach is the standard for organic cotton, our mill made fabrics are oxybleached - this is a system that uses hydrogen peroxide - Rather than Chlorine Bleach.
Genesh our partner in Kerala boils and beaches the yarn rather than the finished cloth - here is his explanation
.

It is doing after boiling the yarn. For boiling soda Ash, silicate are using. Silicate cleared the stains from the raw yarn.
After boiling around 8 hours, the yarn stays in boiled water more than 12 hours. Then it is washed with plain water and enter on to the Bamboo Sticks.
This yarns hanged on bamboo sticks are put in the bath tank used in Hydrogen Peroxide.
After Bleaching yarns are washing to washout its foam etc.
For piece dyeing the fabrics are washed after bleaching to get maximum performance of color dyes.

 

Are your fabrics Vegan?

None of our fabrics are certified as being vegan.

We do get asked about this a lot, so we have asked some of our suppliers the question, here are their responses;

Koray from Egedeniz:

"The fabrics we make have no relation with animals. We are getting cotton which is a plant and making different kind of fabrics. We do not use any animal related thing in any process.

Vegan term is used to separate leather and unleather products as I know. Vegan term can be used for fake leather qualities that is not sourced from a real animal skin or leather so they are animal friendly.

You may easily say that we have no relation with animals. I do not think that Vegan term is something that can be called for a cotton fabric."

...

Anuj from Silk n Fab;

"We are using GOTS approved dyestuff etc. Not aware of any animal content on this."

 

Threads.

Our thread spools (the ones we sell) are organic cotton.
The thread we use in Kerala for making items like squares, and quilting, and tea towels is an industrial thread and is polyester based. We have looked and continue to try to use organic cotton but find resistance from our makers as the thread is not easily available in India and they prefer the added strength and durability of polyester.... watch this space.

 

Can we use your fabric to manufacture our clothing?
Yes , no problem, there is no restriction on how you use our designs.
We have mill made fabric and handmade fabric. Quality of both is very good but handmade fabric differs from machine made fabric, it may have irregularities, small repairs, it may shrink, one batch may be different from the next. Batches can also vary slightly for mill made fabrics. Please take an extra moment with inspection before make up if you are using our handmade fabrics.

 

Can you make muslin cloths for me?
Yes we can make cloths to any size and we can insert your own style label. It can take ages, sample can take 8 weeks or more and the cloths can take many months to make. We have to weave the cloth, then pass it to the womens cooperative we work with - they are called Gramodia. Minimums are usually about 500 for larger squares and at least 1000 for 30 x 30 squares.

 

Can we print on your fabrics?
Our finished fabrics are usually fine for screen printing.
If they are produced in Kerela they will have been made by hand and may have the odd slub, knot or irregularity. Such fabrics are crossweaves, narrow twill, denim, medium weight. If this is important to you then please ask for more detail.

Mill made fabrics like poplin, cambridge, percale, wide twill, jersey, batiste will all be okay for screen printing.
Most mill fabric like poplin, cambridge, percale, wide twill, jersey, batiste will be okay( after coating) for digital printing but printers will have their own requirements so we would advise showing them a sample.

Some of these mill fabrics will either by PFP or RFD :-

PFP = Prepared for Printing

RFD = Ready for Dyeing


Unfinished fabrics- linens and cottons may be suiltable for screen printing but you need to do your own tests. Unfinished fabric will shrink after washing.

 

Can you print for us?
Yes. It's old tech screen printing. One or two colours. Takes months...minimums usually 200 metres.
Costs vary depending on the cloth and design, get in touch to see what we can do.
We dont work to deadlines. You need to be patient and accept that printing in India is low cost but time consuming and that you will not have a perfect digital print. Small flaws and imperfections will arise.
If you can live with that, please get in
touch, we can send your designs to Kerala and begin the process. We charge between £35 to £50 to make the screen and get samples sent from Kerala.
We can also make bespoke cloths, muslins, teatowels aprons etc.


Washing.
All our fabrics are washable, but they are made in different batches by different weavers. We have hundreds of cloths so we've got to be a bit vague sorry. Batches of  handmade fabrics will be slightly different from batch to batch. Unfinished cloths will shrink a lot as they are not washed. Natural colour fabrics will shrink in general more than dyed fabrics. Dyed fabrics are generally colour fast but they are sometimes hand dyed and batches can vary.
As a general guide -TEST. You can cut a strip and measure then wash and measure again- that's called a strip test and will give you an idea if there is bleed or shrinkage. Do ask, we will always do our best to advise.

Have a look at our page on shrinkage.

 

Payment.
Cheque is fine, bank transfer is fine, credit card over the phone- let us know and we can call you. Secure card online is fine. (We don't keep your details) Paypal is fine.

Bank Transfers - Our bank transfers show up each morning, we generally try to ship the day after we see the funds in our morning bank statement.

 

Payment security.
When you pay you will be taken to the secure payment website to pay by card or paypal. We do not hold your details. Your details are only entered when you are on the secure payment website.We can take phone payments. We enter your details onto the secure payment website. We do not retain your details. Any concerns, please get in touch.

 

GDPR
Well that was big fuss!!       BUT... Privacy is vital.
We dont hold any card or payment details. Payments are made either through the bank or via paypal without us retaining or storing information about you.
We do know where you live and if you ordered fabric from us, then we might know the colour of your drapes or jeans.... Thats it really.
We might send you a very occasional email and you can easily unsubscribe with one click.
Our website has the green padlock.
Let us know if you have concerns, we want to do the right thing.

 

Returns.
We dont currently have a hard and fast policy, we just try and help where we can.

If its faulty then of course we replace.


If you changed your mind, ordered the wrong fabric or didn't request a sample before ordering, which we always stress is vital, then we can't accept returns.  Mind you, having said that we're all human, and will always listen to your story to see if there is a way of easing the pain of dropping a clanger.


Late deliveries.  If you are on a tight schedule then we will always do our best but the risk is yours. The post office guaranteed times sometimes dont work out

 

Environment policy

We look at every aspect of our business and try to make it environmentally sound and fair.

We ship fabrics, we only use certified cotton, use carboard and paper packaging when we can for our small parcels. We reuse existing packaging where possible, recycle our cardboard and wrapping.

We don't get it right all the time, but we do try. We try and pay fair wages though we struggle with the word 'fair'. We don't screw down to get the lowest price from our weavers and we don't charge 'designer prices'


We 'live' on an eco park with 110 solar panels. Our premises are in a highly insulated unit on Dyfi Eco Park and the park was an early adopter (18years ago) of solar panels which we have on our roof.


We do not use polyester based fabric.
All the cotton we use is 100% organic.

All cotton yarn is certified at source.

 

Can you ship to Timbucktoo ?
We can ship to most places. If you register as NON EU and are shipping to an address outside the EU  such as USA or AUS, then your invoice will show just the bare prices with no 20% UK tax  - yipee.
The invoice will not show shipping cost. We will look for the best way to send your order and send you a separate shipping cost invoice.
If you dont want to go ahead, thats fine, we will refund in full.

or

Complete your order and tick 'pay by cheque' or 'bank transfer' - we can send you an invoice and include the shipping cost if that's easier for you.

 

 

 

 



 

 


 

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