Hemp Shirts: The Process

an image of Babble & Hemp's stall at Portobello Road Market in London

Quality shirts from an ancient fabric

The environmental benefits of hemp spoke for themselves - growing using only rainwater and no pesticides, whilst the fabric gets softer with time.

But in order to create a product that would stand out - be loved - and would spread the word about hemp clothing, I had to create the highest quality shirt possible.

 

The Mill

The key to this was finding the best hemp mill in the world, and for this there was only one place to go - the same place hemp was first turned from plants into clothing five thousand years ago - ancient China.

Ever since discovering hemp as an incredible, diverse plant, the Chinese have led the way in advancing hemp into a softer and softer fabric that's a joy to wear all year round. And today 70% of the world's hemp is grown there.

 

farmers growing hemp in china

The Shirtmaker

Having seen dozens of fabric samples to find the finest hemp mill, I did the same with shirtmakers, after a long search I settled on one - and have built a relationship with a fantastic family run business not far from the mill.

To many, China has a stigma around it for producing undesirable products, however I am proud to say that I both source my fabric and make my shirts in the country that leads the way in hemp fabric research and development. 

Having both the mill and shirtmaker so close to each other, near where the hemp is grown means the supply chain is short, minimising our environmental footprint. As for the shipping distance to London - for every shirt sold we offset the carbon by planting a tree.

 

a pink and blue hemp shirt during an editorial photoshoot

 

Portobello Road Market

When it came to establishing a men's shirt brand in London, there was only one place to go.

Every Saturday morning I set up my stall at Portobello Road Market and have a brilliant day interacting with the thousands of passers by - many of whom I am now privileged enough to call customers. 

So if you're free in town on a Saturday - you know where to find me!

Otherwise, for every shirt ordered online, I package it up and stroll on down to the post office.

 

portobello road fashion market