Made to last: Meet the makers of our Linen

One important aspect of creating our collections is ensuring we chose the right fabrics. This season we have introduced our Wool blended Linen. Made from natural fibers, it is woven by the family run fabric mill Fareleiros in Portugal. 
Chartwell & Suzy are crafted in our Wool Linen Blend fabric. 
The Fareleiros family began over 100 years ago making traditional Portuguese shawls. 100 years later they have honed their skills and equipped themselves with high-precision machinery that enables them to produce beautiful, high quality fabrics adapting to the modern world whilst still giving a nod to their heritage and the teachings of their ancestors.

How do they make it?

The first step in creating fabric is yarn production. Raw materials such as Wool and Linen that have been harvested and processed are transformed into yarn and threads. This is most commonly done with a spinning wheel, the fibers are pulled across the wheel and whilst it spins they are collected on a bobbin then transferred to another machine to make the cloth.

Fareleiros weaver preparing the loom with the yarn 

Next is the weaving process which takes places on a loom. Two sets of yarns are interlaced which forms the cloth. The two sets of yarn are referred to as the warp and weft, the warp is the yarns which run back to front of the loom and the crosswise yarns are the weft.

Fareleiros workers weaving fabrics on a loom. 

Our Linen is made from a combination of Linen and Wool, both derived from natural fibers. Linen comes from Flax plants, flax is either hand-harvested by pulling up the entire plant or by cutting the stalks very close to the root. The plants then need to be dried and the seeds removed. In order to extract the fibers a process of retting takes place. Wool is cleaned and scoured once removed from the sheep. After being carded, the wool fibers are spun into yarn. Spinning for woolen yarns is typically done on a mule spinning machine, while worsted yarns can be spun on any number of spinning machines.

The Oakley Dress is crafted in our Wool Linen Blend fabric.