For centuries, the women of Meghalaya and Jharkhand have kept silk moths in their backyards and homes. After the moths have hatched from their cocoons, the women harvest the silk to make clothing for themselves and their families. Trådverk supports projects that improve the living conditions of impoverished smallholders and families, especially of disadvantaged women in these regions. My silk yarns are certified organic Ahimsa silks ("peace silk" - no moths are harmed during silk harvest), sourced from Meghalaya and Jharkhand.
Semi-nomadic herders with their yak, camel and cashmere goat herds are the lifeblood of Mongolia. Low cashmere prices are forcing herders to keep more and more goats, but consequences are dire: overgrazing and climate change are destroying the Mongolian steppes.
Since 2004, the Mongolian ecosystem management project НОГООН АЛТ aids in the sustainable management of rangelands, and opens access to technological knowledge and better markets for the herders, helping them improve their livelihoods, their animal husbandry and grazing methods. This, and the EU-funded project STeP EcoLab are where I source my yak, baby camel, and cashmere yarn.
Photo credit: Jon Hetts, Mongolia
Every spring, Vishwanath combs the family's Changthangi goats to harvest the world's fines cashmere: Pashmina. He lives in Karnakh, and is an expert spinner and weaver. I'm lucky he shares some of his finest handspun Pashmina yarn with me.
Nan Bray and her flock of sheep roam the Tasmanian midlands. At a fibre count of 17 micron, her extrafine merino gives an amazing softness and handle. No sheep on Nan's farm has ever been mulesed or got its tail docked. Nan provides me with fingering and DK weight merino yarn. NewMerino ® Chain of Custody certifies the sustainability and traceability of this yarn.
The Falkland Islands have a long tradition of producing high-quality merino wool. The fibre for my cobweb lace yarn comes from a certified organic merino farm on the Falklands (this farm has no website, but you can find the spinning mill here).
Photo credit: Nan Bray, Tasmania
Discontinued yarn: This year you can still find small quantities of yarns in my shop from my previous supplier, who dyes and spins high quality, ECOTEX100 certified yarns in Germany.
NEW: Locally sourced and spun Gotland alpaca yarn.
I use only natural dyes, and many of them are certified organic. My go-to dyestuffs are walnut husks, madder root, buckthorn bark, lac and indigo, because they have the highest colourfastness of all natural dyes. But you can always find me experimenting with plants I find on our farm and in the woods.
My studio runs on 100% renewable energy. All my dyestuff is applied as mulch or compost on our small organic farm. My packaging is plastic-free, has a low carbon footprint and is recyclable (or you can use it as mulch in your garden). I'm working on reaching a carbon-neutral lifestyle. It's a long journey. In the meantime, I offset my carbon footprint through atmosphair.