Every fabric starts as a yarn, and every yarn starts as a fiber. Plant fibers like cotton, bamboo, and jute; animal fibers like wool and alpaca—there are dozens of different fibers out there just waiting to become your next tee shirt, chino, blanket, or jacket. But if you’ve taken a look at our roster, ranging from tee shirts to workwear, you’ll notice a whole lot of one fiber in particular: hemp.

So, what is hemp? Should you be wearing more hemp clothing? (spoilers…yes) And why do we use hemp so frequently in our gear? The answers all lie ahead. By the end of this article, you’ll be a bonafide hemp aficionado.

Close up of Taylor Stitch's Cotton Hemp T-Shirt

What is Hemp?

Hemp is a natural plant fiber extracted from the bast of the Cannabis Sativa plant. The plants are harvested, dried, and pulled through a sharp comb to separate the natural plant fibers that make up Cannabis Sativa’s strong, rigid stems. At this stage, the fibers are fine and lustrous with a light brown color.

Hemp fibers are about eight times stronger than cotton and become even stronger when wet. Its plain grit, combined with other qualities like being naturally breathable, cool, and UV resistant, helped hemp gain rapid popularity amongst manual laborers and folks living in warmer climates. In addition to these benefits, hemp is hypoallergenic and resistant to mildew and insects. This combination of attributes has led experts in the textile industry to refer to hemp as a “super fiber.”

Predating cotton textiles by nearly 3000 years, hemp is one of the oldest known fibers on the planet—we’ve found hemp in Colombian tombs dating back to 8000 BC—and has been a staple throughout its history. In fact, hemp cloth and clothing were so popular in 16th-century England that King Henry VIII passed a law that would fine farmers who failed to grow the crop.

Model wearing The Cotton Hemp T-Shirt

Is Hemp Clothing Better For The Environment?

Absolutely. According to Fashionary’s “Textilepedia” (one of the top industry handbooks), “hemp is a rapidly renewable fiber”. That’s because Cannabis Sativa can grow up to four meters in just three months, needs very little water to thrive, and is highly adaptable to various climates. Hemp is also carbon-negative, meaning it actively absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere, an attribute so appealing that the Australian government is considering using hemp farms as a “carbon sink” to help offset the country's greenhouse gas emissions.

So, if you’re looking for ways to minimize the carbon footprint of your wardrobe, opt for hemp tee shirts, hemp pants, or hemp-blend clothing.

How We Use Hemp

We use hemp in varied ways across our rugged roster, from breathable hemp shirts to our featherweight Cotton Hemp Tees. Here’s a breakdown of some ways you’ll find us using hemp in our clothing.

Hemp T-Shirts

Our lineup of Cotton Hemp T-Shirts, Henleys, Hoodies, and Crewnecks leverage hemp's breathable, durable characteristics to create timeless basics that will stand the test of time. Since hemp can be a little rough on the skin, we blend it with organic cotton and utilize a slightly more open weave structure, resulting in a buttery hand feel that softens with every wash and wear. Check out the full Cotton Hemp lineup for a closer look.

100% Hemp Clothing

100% hemp clothing has a pronounced grain and unique, breezy hand feel. While we don’t carry 100% hemp clothing year-round, if you check in during the summer months, you can find limited-run hemp garments like camp collar shirts and hemp pants.

Model wearing The Cotton Hemp T-Shirt in Vintage White

Clearly, we’re big fans of hemp. It’s good for the environment, tough as nails, and surprisingly versatile. We hope that armed with all your new knowledge about this “super fib”, you feel empowered to add more hemp to your heavy rotation. But be warned, once you give hemp a chance, you’ll have a hard time wearing anything else.

Shop Hemp Clothing

Interested to learn more about our other fabrics? Check out the rest of our Fabric Stories:

The Hemp Style Guide
June 05, 2024

The Hemp Style Guide

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fit model wearing The Après Short in Organic Aged Stone Foundation Twill
May 16, 2024

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