We believe that climate change is the greatest challenge of our generation - and for us, sustainability isn’t just a seasonal marketing term we apply to our work without merits. We create solutions actively innovating the ways in which we steward Huston Textile Company towards an ethical and transparent manufacturing model. Our growth and path to ‘better’ continuously values critical natural resources and essential human skill sets for positive impacts on people and planet.
We started our mill in 2013 with a ‘placed-based’ mission - to produce textiles for, and from, the American landscapes of industry in a responsible way. Restoring vintage machines and developing our material knowledge base, our goal was to produce the highest quality, small-batch and bespoke cloth, re-creating a truly American-Made identity in products reminiscent of the golden age of textiles.
From farm to fabric, every step of the process is transparent and originates in the United States. Using domestically sourced natural and sustainable raw materials, we ‘invest’ in local farmers and ranchers. We choose to value these critical stewards and their fibers, supporting our ‘divestment’ not only from petroleum/chemical-based materials but also from extractive industry practices in labor and trade. Once the natural protein and plant fibers are ready to be processed, we work closely with U.S. based spinners, dyers, and finishers enabling us to reduce our environmental footprint while empowering regional economies.
Image: Bowles Farming Co., Huston Textile Co., Kristy Weldon
Restoring the biodiversity and health of local ecosystems is essential to life on our planet. We believe that textiles made from regeneratively produced fibers are the future, offering viable ways for us to mitigate the effects of climate change while enhancing agricultural productivity and community resilience - from the ground up. Standards developed by Fibershed, labeled Climate Beneficial™, provide a measurable way for farmers and ranchers to sequester carbon from our atmosphere through the production of fibers like cotton, hemp, flax and wool. When applied within a regional supply chain, these regenerative land practices create a “carbon sink” and the potential for carbon net-negative textile products.
We are proud to be the first fabric mill to produce Climate Beneficial™ and Climate Beneficial™ transitional fabrics in partnership with Fibershed and Northern California based farmers and ranchers. Some of our partners in these efforts include Bare Ranch, Bowles Farming Co. and Vreseis Limited.
Image: Paige Green, Lani's Lana, Re:source Library
Hemp just happens to be one of the most sustainable fibers we’re growing to understand - and love! Since the 2018 Federal Farm Bill which legalized industrial hemp, we have been at the forefront of new projects working to reignite the hemp fiber industry in the United States. In 2019, in partnership with Fibershed and Mendocino Wool and Fiber Inc., we created the first woven hemp/wool blended fabric in recent history. The hemp, grown and processed sustainably in the U.S., was blended with wool from Kaos Sheep Outfit whose sheep graze on public land to help reduce fire risk in California. We envision more tools like this hemp fiber blend to highlight how versatile, and achievable, paths to sustainability can be.
Image: Recreator, Recreator, Fibershed
Our warehouse is run on a blend of renewable, carbon-free energy sources through SMUD (Sacramento Municipal Utility District). Supporting such a micro grid gives us the ability to not only power our textile machines in a cleaner way, but it also helps us balance the energy needs of our local community. To be proactive in conserving energy, we have also installed timers on lighting throughout our workspaces and continuously look for more opportunities to improve our use of energy.
Image: S.M.U.D., Michael Wilson, Kristy Weldon
We define circularity as a goal to sustainably perpetuate - through products and processes. Mindsets of repurposing are critical in how we design for any product. That’s why our fabrics are made for longevity at a standard akin to the textile heirlooms of our ancestors passed down from generation to generation. This dedication begins with thoughtfully farmed raw materials, of natural origin, that support ecologically harmonious agricultural efforts in addition to yielding fibers that have the capacity to decompose back into the earth at the end of their lifecycle. We are also mindful that any mill ends or fabric cut-offs that occur during our manufacturing processes are given new life through resale, reuse or are recycled through third party partnerships.