Mercerization - what's that, actually?
Mercerization - a word that sounds just as impressive as the process it describes, but about which one or the other person is sure to stop and ask. What exactly is it?
First of all: Mercerization is a finishing process that gives fabrics a beautiful shine and strengthens them.
It owes its name to the British chemist John Mercer, who made a discovery in the middle of the 19th century that had far-reaching consequences for the possibilities of substances. He observed that cotton, when treated with caustic soda, changes its structure. The fabric swells and becomes denser and denser, increases the absorption of color and acquires a silky sheen - properties that are normally lost after the cotton harvest and subsequent processing, but which we have brought back into the fabric for you.
Of course: the term “caustic soda” does not come without a certain discomfort. What use is the most beautiful fabric if the way it is manufactured is not clean? It was precisely this discomfort that drove us to develop a process together with our producer, at the end of which there is a substance that we can offer you with a clear conscience. Short side note on caustic soda: It is primarily an environmentally harmful substance not because of its toxic properties, but because of its pH value - at 14 this is strongly alkaline, which can cause chemical burns in organic creatures and also has an unfavorable effect on the balance in aquatic habitats.
Both are risks that we are not willing to accept and for which we therefore wanted to find an alternative. Our Portuguese producer, from whom we get our mercerized interlock fabrics and many other qualities, succeeded around two years ago in implementing an innovative process in which the chemicals that are used are kept in a cycle and thus the environment and cannot harm other living beings. And so we have been offering a mercerized fabric that is GOTS-certified since summer 2019 and hopefully for many years to come - in many beautiful colors such as stone.