The Journey of Cork Fabric: From Tree to Textile

Are We Killing Trees for Fabric?

Welcome to our blog! Today, we’re diving into the fascinating process of how cork fabric is made. This incredible material, known for its sustainability and unique properties, transforms from tree bark into a versatile textile used in various applications. Let’s explore each step of this journey.

1. Cork Oak Trees in Portugal


The journey starts in the lush cork oak forests of Portugal, home to the cork oak tree. These trees are renowned for their thick, rugged bark, which is the primary source of cork.

2. Sustainable Harvesting of Cork Bark


Cork is harvested by carefully stripping the bark from the tree without harming it. This sustainable practice can be repeated every 9-12 years, allowing the tree to regenerate its bark and continue growing.

3. Sorting Cork Material


Once harvested, the cork bark is sorted and graded. The best quality cork is used for wine stoppers, while other grades are reserved for fabric, wallpaper, flooring, and granulated cork products. Importantly, no part of the cork bark goes to waste.

4. Boiling Cork Bark


The raw cork bark is then boiled to remove impurities and soften the material. This process eliminates natural latex and makes the cork more pliable for further processing.

5. Flattening and Drying


After boiling, the cork is flattened and dried to remove any remaining moisture, preparing it for slicing into thin sheets.

6. Cutting into Thin Cork Sheets


The dried cork is meticulously cut into very thin sheets. These sheets form the basis for cork fabric but are too delicate to use alone.

7. Applying Backing Material


To add strength and durability, the thin cork sheets are laminated onto backing materials. Common backings include polyester fibers, cotton, linen, and microfiber. While completely eliminating polyester fibers is challenging, we are committed to gradually reducing their content.

8. Laminating Cork Sheets


The laminated cork sheets undergo further processing to ensure a strong bond between the cork and the backing, enhancing the fabric's durability and flexibility.

9. Cutting and Final Processing


The final cork fabric is cut into desired shapes and sizes, making it ready for various applications, from fashion items to home decor.

10. The Finished Cork Fabric


The result is a soft, lightweight, and versatile cork fabric that can be used in sewing projects just like any other textile. Cork fabric offers unique aesthetic and functional qualities, making it a popular choice for eco-friendly and stylish products.

### Conclusion
From the forests of Portugal to the final fabric, cork undergoes a meticulous process emphasizing sustainability and innovation. This natural material is not only eco-friendly but also versatile, finding applications in various design fields. We are continuously researching ways to enhance cork fabric's sustainability, including reducing the use of synthetic fibers in backing materials.

We hope you enjoyed learning about the journey of cork fabric. Check out our collections and bring a piece of sustainable luxury into your life today!

Next time, we will delve deeper into how cork fabric transforms from its natural state into various unique designs, including different colors, prints, and styles. Stay tuned to discover the endless possibilities of cork fabric!

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