The textile industry has a huge impact on nature and the workers in the industry, because of all the chemicals that are used in production processes. Nienke Hoogvliet started to wonder if these substances are still present in the textiles when we eventually use them. In a literature study, she discovered that many textiles still contain harmful chemicals and that they can cause a variety disorders and diseases. Driven to raise awareness about this by showing a solution – and not only the problem – she started the H.E.R.B.S. project. Can textiles also release substances that can be beneficial to our health and skin? Herbs are known for their medicinal effects; would they still have this effect when they are used as a textile dye?
Nienke herbal dyed textile samples that later were tested in a laboratory. It was proven that essential oils can be transferred to textile through the dyeing process. Since literally, every body reacts differently, it is hard to say how the dyes will contribute to human health in general. Will it have a positive effect on you?
The H.E.R.B.S. installation is an experience that continues back home. After a ‘discarded’ tee shirt is dyed with the herbal dye of your choice, you can take it home and wear the shirt to experience the possible beneficial effects. We hope this experience will change your perspective on the clothes you wear.