"We selected a blend of 70% merino wool and 30% silk for our scarves because it is neither too shiny nor too matt and it is the perfect weight to wear all year round."
Silk production began in China around 4000BC and China dominated the industry for several thousands of years. During the Han Dynasty (206BC-220AD) silk was considered so valuable it was used as a form of currency.
The domesticated silkworm (Bombyx mori) will eat many different types of foliage but only produces silk if it eats Mulberry leaves. In 1400AD Ludovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan, began planting Mulberry trees around Lake Como and from that point onwards Como came to dominate silk production in Europe.
The Mulberry trees remained until World War II when conditions were so severe the locals were forced to cut down the trees to cook and heat their homes. It takes 25-30years for a Mulberry tree to mature, this meant that in the years following the war, the Italian mills returned to buying Chinese silk.
We choose to work with a silk weaving mill founded in Como in 1931. The company is now run by Attilio, who shares the same name as his grandfather, the founder of the company. Attilio’s two sons also work in the family business. They are experts in both weaving and printing.
We selected a blend of 70% merino wool and 30% silk for our scarves because it is neither too shiny nor too matt and it is the perfect weight to wear all year round. Unusually, instead of weaving wool yarns and silk yarns together, the fibres are spun together to form a blended yarn (this is known as an intimate blend). Every step of the process happens in Italy; spinning, weaving, printing and finally, making the scarves.
Como is a special place and we’re lucky to work with a family that produces such special scarves.