New York bedding brand Buffy has deigned a comforter made from eucalyptus pulp instead of cotton, a move it claims saves 100,000,000 gallons of water.
The Breeze duvet uses eucalyptus pulp for its threading, cover and stuffing. One of the benefits of using the plant is that it requires 10 times less water than cotton, which is commonly used in bedding.
Buffy claims to have helped conserve over 100,000,000 gallons of water since launching the comforter, by using a significantly less resource-intensive material.
"Traditionally comforters, bedding and textiles, in general, are not very sustainably made and they eat up an incredible amount of source footprint, particularly in the form of water," said Buffy founder Leo Wang. "It is about 90 per cent less water-intensive to cultivate."
Wang, whose family has been producing textiles in China for decades, launched the brand in 2017 with the Cloud comforter, which combines eucalyptus fibre with an inner made from recycled plastic bottles. Breeze is the second iteration and is the first fully plant-based design.
It is designed to be soft and breathable but also regulates temperature, resulting in a comfortable sleep. Wang likens the feel of the duvet to down – which is made from bird's feathers – but because it is plant-based it is suitable to vegans.
The eucalyptus pulp is sourced from Lenzing, Austria. At a local factory, the pulp is spun and bound into yarn to make the exterior and thread for the comforter, while the fill is made from loose eucalyptus fibres.
The materials are then shipped to China, where the quilt is cut, sewn and assembled at partner mills of the Wang family.
"When you take the pulp and turn it into a liquid, you can make a fibre of any shape you please," Wang said. "We chose to model it on perfect silk fibre."
The eucalyptus fabric is then lightened with a chlorine-free bleach, decreasing the number of toxins emitted.
The brand also claims it is naturally softer than cotton, as well as antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory.
"If you pluck out one of the fibres from our comforters and put it under a microscope, you'll see that it has no strange irregularities or coarseness," said Wang. "That's what makes it so soft."
A wavy stitch pattern is added to prevent fibres from clumping together – a common problem in gridded comforters. The pattern helps to give the duvet greater structural integrity, while also referencing a form found in nature.
Photography is courtesy of Buffy.