Summary:Nonwoven mats from hemp and polypropylene fibres in various proportions were produced and hot pressed to make composite material. The effect of hemp fibre content and anisotropy in nonwoven mats resulting from the carding technology were examined on the basis of the three-point bending, tensile and impact properties of the resultant composite materials. Because of the hydrophilic nature and poor dimensional stability of cellulosic fibres due to swelling, the effect of water sorption on mechanical performances was also investigated. Optimal mechanical properties were achieved in composites made from 40–50% of hemp fibre by weight. As it was expected, better mechanical properties were found in the specimens cut from the composite sheets parallel to the direction of carding. A strong decrease in three point bending properties was noticed after immersing the composite samples in distilled water for 19 days, while the impact strength increased. Double carding of raw materials resulted in a decreased anisotropy in composite material.