There’s been a boom in direct-to-consumer bedding startups, with brands like Brooklinen, Parachute, and Boll & Branch entering the market with high-quality sheets at a fraction of the price of luxury brands.
Today, a new Japanese brand enters the mix with a focus on organic, eco-friendly materials. Aizome’s bedding uses no synthetic chemicals throughout the manufacturing process. As I’ve written about elsewhere, non-organic cotton farming involves pesticides that pollute the groundwater. But Aizome points out that dyeing textiles also damages the environment, and the harsh chemicals used in the process can also irritate skin and cause allergic reactions.
Aizome takes its name from a centuries-old Japanese dyeing method that the brand uses. It involves putting the raw textiles into vats of natural indigo. Indigo also contains a chemical called tryptanthrin, which is believed to have healing effects on the skin. In the past, samurais wore garments dyed with indigo under their armor, and it was also used in baby clothing, since an infant’s skin tends to be particularly sensitive to irritants.
The process is also better for the environment because it uses 85% less water than chemical dying, and since the wastewater is chemical-free, it can be reused as fertilizer. Traditional chemical dying typically uses about 10,000 liters of fresh water per bedding set. The company is launching in the U.S. market through Kickstarter with sheet sets starting at $99.