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Article from Victorian Country Woman, December 2018.

Hemp Crops for a Thirsty Land?

One of the first projects the new Collingwood CWA branch embarked on was making up Earth Bags. The bags reflect the importance of sustainability and environmental issues to our members and have been a great hit on our stalls.

Our website dedicates a page to information about the items and we offer patterns and instructions to encourage people to have a go at making them themselves.

We run Earth Bag blitzesat the Collingwood Childrens Farm and produce quantities of the ever popular hemp twine scrubbies, hemp yarn dishcloths, beeswax food wrap and newspaper bin liners.

Hemp dishcloths

For us, the Earth Bags are not so much about raising money but more of a way to open a discussion about why it’s important to minimise waste and to demonstrate practical and thrifty ways of doing that.

Theres also an important message about the value of hemp as a crop.

It is disappointing to us that we cannot source Australian-made hemp textiles. Our hemp yarn and twine comes from Turkey!

Our supplier, Hemp WA explains its value:

– It lasts longer – Hemp fibres are 3 times stronger than cotton and 25 times more durable.

 – It is cooler in summer and warmer in winter –  Hemp provides excellent climate controlfor the wearer with the hollow fibre acting as an insulator, keeping them cooler in summer and warmer in winter. 

 –  It is soft and comfortable – Hemp softens with wearing and washing, without losing its strength.  This means that the more it is worn and washed, it becomes even more comfortable. You can expect to wear out before your shirt does. 

– It is easy care – Hemp fibre also has a springiness’ or ‘memoryso that creasing is less than other natural fibres and gets less as the garment is used.   

– It holds its shape -Hemps superior strength and durability means garments still look good long after their first wear.

– It is healthier – Hemp fibre shape also means that it has improved absorbency and breathability. Hemp is naturally resistant to mildew, bacteria, and insects.

– It has built-in UV protection – Hemp offers greater UV protection, blocking up to 95% of the suns harmful rays.

– It gives stunning print resolution- Hemp has proven it can hold the finest detail when printed, and also gives great results with embroidered designs.

– It is better for the planet – Hemp is grown chemical free, enriches its soil, saves water and produces 2 4 times more fibre per area than other sources.

Perhaps the CWA could explore the value of tapping into this potential industry in our very thirsty country?

Margot Foster

Article from Victorian Country Woman, July 2018.

Cake, Country and Community Action in Collingwood



Barn Yarn No 1.

‘Consume Cake NOT Clothes’ on ABC RadioVic Country Hour

The Country Hour’s Nikolai Beilhartz interviewed Marley Downey about about sustainable fashion and why it matters on Tuesday 14th August 2018 Listen here

(The interview comes in at 45’20”)

Weekly Times article April 11, 2018
Weekly Times article April 11, 2018

Our vice-president Helen shows how to make a bin liner for your rubbish bin or food scraps bin using a page from a newspaper and a few dabs of glue.


CWA’s progressive stance attracts new urban members

Michael Mackenzie of Radio National spoke to champion scone maker and long time CWA member Joy Davis and the treasurer of the Collingwood branch, Jimena Valencia.  Listen to the interview here





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