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Climate awareness and the cost-of-living crisis have each pushed the concept of energy efficiency to the front of the mind as homeowners search for ways to keep their living spaces warm and comforting while saving energy at the same time.
Fortunately, this can be achieved with a few tips and tricks involving smarter choice of home textiles products. To share some best practices for living sustainably (and warmly) all throughout winter and ways in which TENCEL™ fibers help achieve this, we have invited Ebru Bayramoglu, Director of Global Business Development at Lenzing Group AG, for the next segment of our “TENCEL™ Insights” Series.
Q: Why is the idea of being ‘energy-efficient’ at home especially pertinent right now?
E: The trend of living sustainably is not new; many sought ways to spruce up their living spaces with minimal impact on the environment, particularly as Covid-19 pushed our lives to be largely indoors and confined to home. However, the cost-of-living crisis – experienced worldwide but particularly in Europe and the UK – has exacerbated this need with higher energy bills. As a result, more homeowners are turning to home textiles products as an energy-efficient alternative rather than turning to the thermostat as a means of staying warm. Products such as ‘thermal curtains’, which help keep the cold out, have seen a spike in online searches, and some products have even been designed to accommodate contrasting and changing temperatures – a symptom of climate change.
Q: What practical and sustainable tips can you share for maintaining a warm and comforting home?
E: There are many things you can do around the house to maintain warmth. Sealing doorways and windows are one of the simplest way to prevent heat loss around the home. So, for example, installing thermal curtains which I have mentioned, is one way to keep draughts from coming into the room and choosing ones with detachable inners allows you to continue using them even when the weather gets warmer.
Blankets are especially great for home comfort, not only due to the physical warmth they provide but the additional comforting reassurance that stocking your home with blankets provides can be especially useful during the colder months. Some homeowners opt for weighted blankets like Coco & CiCi’s All Season Duvet, which is great year-round. The heavier construction provides heat retention and its warming yet temperature-regulating TENCEL™ fibers provide coziness while still maintaining a breathability factor to prevent night sweating. What’s more is that studies have shown that textile surfaces provide both physiological and psychological comfort. Humans are sensitive to heat loss, so bare walls or floors can often be perceived as cold, even if there isn’t a significant change in temperature. To warm up interiors, I suggest looking for rugs or even styling textiles as décor for an even cozier environment! Jacaranda’s Babri & Badoli collection has a perfect combination of the practicality and warmth of wool from the brand, as well as the softness and shine by TENCEL™, excelling interiors with natural, undyed shades.
Q: How is TENCEL™ helping to enable more environmentally-friendly home textile solutions? Have there been any industry collaborations that address this need in particular?
E: TENCEL™ fibers, apart from being certified as biodegradable and produced in a resource-efficient closed loop process, offer a myriad of functional qualities that make them especially suitable for home textile applications. TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers are naturally soft to the touch and offer long-lasting comfort. When viewed under an electron microscope, TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers exhibit a smooth surface area, giving fabrics a smooth feel and ensuring comfort for sensitive skin.
TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers also helps with body temperature regulation through excellent moisture management. The fibers are structured to regulate the absorption and release of moisture to keep your skin at optimal temperatures throughout the day and night in addition to being unfavorable to bacterial growth. This means that the fibers are ideal for everything from basic bedding products to upholstery. Moreover, in displaying a luxurious sheen and silky surface, TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers make carpets and upholstery shine radiantly with vibrant colors.
TENCEL™ branded modal fibers on the other hand, exhibit high flexibility and offer textiles a long-lasting quality of exquisite softness. Due to its fiber’s sleek cross section, TENCEL™ Modal fibers can enhance the soft touch of fabrics even after repeated washing, making it a great fiber partner for products such as towels or bedding.
In the market, you can find various home textiles products made of TENCEL™ fibers. For example, we have worked with brands such as Jacaranda, JAB Teppiche, Frankly Amsterdam and Intercarpet in offering a diverse range of rugs made with TENCEL™ fibers. In the upholstery realm, we collaborated with LIZZO, Kirkby Design, Zimmer & Rohde and more. Consumer can buy drapers made with TENCEL™ Lyocell fibers at Pottery Barn and Kid Norway too.
Q: Is the trend of using home textiles as an energy-saving alternative here to stay?
E: Absolutely. While the attention on home textiles may have been prompted by the need to stay energy-efficient, home textiles are a key area – beyond fashion and apparel – where brands and retailers are looking for solutions that help enhance product longevity and durability. In sharing these tips, I hope more consumers will look for eco-responsible furniture and home textile pieces that are made to last, as well as last them through the winter.
 TENCEL™ fibers are certified by TÜV Austria as biodegradable in soil, freshwater and marine environments, and compostable under home and industrial conditions.
TENCEL™ Lyocell and Modal fiber production processes are continuously refined to maximize resource efficiency and minimize environmental impact at every stage. Consequently, carbon emissions and water consumption of TENCEL™ fibers are up to 50% lower compared to generic lyocell and modal fibers.