Ramie is one of the oldest natural fibers used for making textiles and fabrics. Records show that cloth made from the Ramie plant have been used on Egyptian mummies, 5000–3300 BC. Ramie is an extremely strong fiber that has a very similar appearance to flax with the addition of a unique silky luster.
Producing ramie is very time consuming and quite expensive. The fibers need to be scraped, pounded, heated, washed, and exposed to chemicals, before weaving. Although ramie has great strength it is much less durable than most other fabrics. Over time the fibers tend to get brittle and eventually break. Today ramie is mostly blended with other natural fabrics like wool, cotton, and silk. Adding Ramie to wool for example reduces shrinkage after washing. Today China is the largest exporter of Ramie fibers.