I choose to work with the highest quality natural materials, because I believe in beauty that lasts. Most of my yarns are blends of wool and silk. Together these two fibres allow me to create a fabric which is light and soft to wear, as well as warm and luxurious.
I source my yarn from a UK supplier who shares my concern for the welfare of both the animals and the people who care for them. They work with small farms and herders to ensure that best farming practices are used and that local people are supported in maintaining their preferred way of life.
The wool is either South American Merino, chosen for its softness and lightness, or Blue-faced Leicester, the UK’s own luxury breed, which brings a rich creamy-yellow undertone and a wonderful glossy sheen to the yarn. Some of the yarn even includes a small amount of yak, which is so soft it is a bit like wearing a cloud. It also adds a gentle natural grey to the mix. The more silk there is in the yarn, the more it glows. Contrasting proportions of wool and silk can add depth and interest to a simple interlacement.
To warp up the loom successfully it is important that the yarn is strong but not too stretchy. I use two-ply yarns of a thickness which a knitter would describe as laceweight, though weavers refer to it by its count. The count is a pair of numbers which describe the structure of the yarn and its weight. My favourite yarns have from 8,000 – 12,000 metres in one kilo and a single scarf will take upwards of 1,000 metres of yarn in total.