From Natural Fibres to Polyester and Back Again

By Donna RandallAnnie OakleyWith 0 comments

I think it is safe to assume that most of you lived through the polyester phase of life, and can relate to my comment here that it is a great fibre in that it either never stains or the stains always come out, no matter how severe. Interesting then that eventually polyester lost favour with most of us, who wanted to get back to clothing ourselves with natural fibres, which also will disintegrate and not fill up our landfill sites.

Enter life as a caregiver of the generation that grew up with natural fibres and now washing machines or wringer washes, and that learned to adore polyester. The women (in particular) of their generation praised this fibre that made their lives so much easier, especially coupled with the advent and widespread use of the automatic washing machine.

As a woman who has experienced both polyester and natural fibres and who chooses the later for my own clothing, I now am embracing the oodles of polyester clothes in my elder’s closets. Given advanced age seems to bring with it a return to spilling (yes, back to our childhoods), plus the dulling of our eyesight, which means that we caregivers need to deal with loads of stained clothing. I, for one, am now thankful to polyester for allowing me to spend far less time cleaning Annie’s clothing than I do keeping our own laundry clean, given I can’t quite embrace polyester for myself or my husband. And so it seems, yet again, that what goes around comes around, and given the polyester clothing already exists, I don’t have to feel guilty about being responsible for clogging up our world with indestructible fibres!

Yours in Caregiving,


*Image from R&K Originals BETTMANN/CORBIS via The Wall Street Journal