Pineapple fibre is made from the leaves of a pineapple plant and is commonly used in the Philippines. Pina weaving is an age old tradition dating back to Hispanic times. However, when the much cheaper cotton fabrics became popular, its production ceased and Pina fabric almost disappeared. Till the mid eighties, pina fiber was nearly impossible to find with only a handful of aging, part time weavers working for its survival. In fact, pineapple fibre has been revived in the recent past two decades only.
The piña weaving industry has allowed people the employment opportunities needed to substantially improve their lives. Weaving and embroidery jobs enable women, especially, to earn salaries that allow them to be home rather than being forced to travel abroad to become domestic workers. From a sustainability standpoint, pineapples respond better to rich soil, and now an increasing number of organic farmers are producing organic pineapples.
Pineapple fibre is resilient and strong, and have a slight sheen similar to silk. This gloss protects the fibers, which means piña does not require any treatment with toxic chemicals to be refined. And unlike many other luxury fabrics, it is easy to wash and care for – no dry cleaning required.
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