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The making of the H.E.R.B.S. Quilt by Nienke Hoogvliet

HERBS quilt By Mölle

With a shared purpose to make the textile industry more sustainable, and a fascination for medicinal herbs, By Mölle Studio asked Studio Nienke Hoogvliet to make a Quilt based on the H.E.R.B.S. Project for which she has done research in recent years. For the design of the new H.E.R.B.S. Quilt the results of this research are leading. For the development of  the H.E.R.B.S. Quilt pure linen of By Mölle is used. Within the design process of Studio Nienke Hoogvliet the materials, textures and colors that emerge during the research are leading. Research and design are intertwined, and only at the end of the development process the H.E.R.B.S. Quilt will get its definite form.Why herbs?
Many herbs and spices are not only very tasty but also have unique medicinal properties. They have been used for centuries in different cultures to contribute to our health. By eating them, making medicines and in creams.

Dyeing with rosemary
Many clothes and textiles for your home are dyed with chemicals that can have an effect on our health via our skin. The skin is our largest organ and has the capacity to absorb substances. For the H.E.R.B.S. research Studio Nienke Hoogvliet investigated whether, if we use medicinal herbs like rosemary, the textile can actually benefit your health.

Nienke Hoogvliet: “I have investigated the medicinal effect of herbs such as rosemary, sage and chamomile. Each herb has a different effect. I dyed a natural By Mölle linen with the herbs and then made it into a quilt. The pure linen from By Mölle is ideal for this research because it is produced sustainably.”The tests in the textile research center Centexbel with samples of the linen dyed with herbs have worked out well. Indeed, this showed that the essential oils from herbs can be transferred to linen through a natural dyeing process. The herb-dyed H.E.R.B.S. linen still contains all kinds of essential oils. The entire study is compiled in the book H.E.R.B.S. which was published in autumn 2019.

Healthy Environment, Remedy for Body and Skin
Dyeing with herbs has been done in Ayurveda medicine in ancient India for 5000 years, because the herbs have a beneficial effect. Traditionally prescribed by court doctors, it is now a rich source of inspiration for the H.E.R.B.S. research. The word Ayurveda comes from Sanskrit and means "to know how to live" in harmony with nature. Dyeing textiles with Ayurvedic herbs is called Ayurvastra: Ayur = life and Vastra = clothing. How nice is it if we can dye our pure linen fabrics with medicinal herbs that are beneficial for your health and skin?

By Mölle: “In the past, herbs such as rosemary, indigo, turmeric and madder have been used in clothing in Asia. “Indigo was used by the samurai as undergarments so that their wounds would heal faster. Indigo has an antibacterial effect."

Stay tuned for news about this exciting collaboration!