Up & Coming Weekly

November 08, 2022

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 23 of 28

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM NOVEMBER 9- 15, 2022 UCW 23 Cotton: The fabric of our lives by CYNTHIA ROSS FITNESS CYNTHIA ROSS, Personal Trainer. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomin- gweekly.com 910-484-6200. A trip to Holden Beach took us through the country with beautiful views of farms and fields. We rounded a curve and there was a field of cotton so beautiful it looked like it had been painted. Even in that passing moment, I could see the open blossoms a bright white against the landscape and sky. us, my inspiration for this week's article. e word cotton comes from the Arabic word "quton". e earliest production was in India dating back to 5,000 B.C. Arab merchants brought cotton cloth to Europe around A.D. 800, and when Co- lumbus discovered America in 1492, he saw cotton growing in fields on the Bahama Islands and along the east coast. e history of cotton spans more than 7,000 years. About 3000 B.C., cotton was cultivated in the Indus River Valley, and about 2500 B.C., Chinese, South Americans and Egyptians began wearing cotton fabrics. Cotton spread west to Egypt, Turkey, Central America and the Caribbean. Cotton is soft and fluffy, and the United States is the largest producer of cotton as an export. e production is a lengthy and involved process from planting to picking. It is not easy to grow and prefers warm and humid climates. Historically, cotton was picked by hand, which took hours to process and separate. Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1794, which revolution- ized the process. Today, cotton pickers are machinery that picks the entire plant, and a cotton stripper is used for separa- tion. After it is picked it is baled and stored before going to a gin. At the gin it is cleaned and fluffed to separate the cotton from seeds and lint, then it is compressed and ready to ship to textile mills. When it is cleaned and fluffed it is put into a card- ing machine which cleans the material again and forms short fibers into long untwisted rope for spin- ning and weaving ere are four types of cotton. Pima is the finest because the fibers are extra soft and long. Egyptian cotton has similar qualities but is grown in the Nile River Valley in Egypt. Upland cot- ton makes up about 90% of the world's total cotton production in Central America, Mexico, the Carib- bean and southern Florida. Organic cotton is cotton grown without chemicals. Cotton is indeed the fabric of our lives, and its uses are in the hundreds. ere are some traces of cotton in almost everything we wear or use daily. Cotton is used to make all types of clothing because of its versatility and comfort, and it is used in mak- ing industrial products. It is used in making fabrics such as flannel, velvet, velour and corduroy. It is used to make fishnets, book bindings and coffee filters. It can be used as food for cattle because it is edible, and cottonseed oil is in high demand as an alternative to vegetable oil. It is used in the pro- duction of cosmetic products and soaps. It is a key ingredient in beauty products such as sheet masks, makeup remover wipes and cottonseed oil to nour- ish the skin. When purchasing sheets 100% cotton is always a go-to for comfort and durability. read counts should range from 200 to 500 and anything above that is not necessarily better quality. Labels that read cotton rich are less than 100% cotton. Bamboo sheets become rayon once they are processed with chemicals that change the composition and texture. e Oeko-Tex certification on a textile signifies that all the product has been tested for toxins. Live, love, life and cotton. Photo courtesy of Pexels Friday, Dec. Get tickets at: uncp.edu/gpac • 910.521.6361 Givens Performing Arts Center • UNC Pembroke /Givenspac The Nutcracker SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 20 * 4 P.M. A benefit concert for music scholarships COMING SOON! FRIDAY, DEC. 2 * 7:30 P.M. EXTRAVAGANZA UNCP MUSIC DEPARTMENT Sponsored by Howington Office Supplies

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