Cork may be one of today’s most under-utilized renewable resources for creating home goods and fashion.

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Under the umbrella of parent, Novacortica S.A., (a company which produces natural cork disks for Champagne), Portuguese-based, Pelcor, has been busy for the past six years finding new ways of using Cork Oak to create an extensive line of goods for the home, fashion accessories, and now — clothing.  Why is this so exciting?  The way Pelcor manufactures is so planet-friendly, and the collections look and feel so great.

apel2.jpgEco upsides:

  • The cork is manually harvested by skilled debarkers in order to not harm the trees.
  • Portugal’s Cork Oaks will supply good quality cork every nine years throughout the tree’s lifespan of approximately 150 years.
  • Cork Oak forests need no chemical herbicides, fertilizers or irrigation.
  • In addition to the Cork Oak’s capacity to produce oxygen, the tree also has a unique cell structure that enables it to retain carbon dioxide, a principle cause of global warming.
  • Planting of cork trees has prevented desertification of dry regions in southern Portugal, reducing soil erosion and providing a livelihood for local populations.

Many of Pelcor’s soft, lightweight eco accessories are available via corkdelux.com. I had the chance to touch the gown and bag, (above R), both made from the cork tree; the material feels very soft, yet durable – similar to a fine organic cotton.

(UPDATE: links removed)