We use only pure fibres - although we do sometimes mix different pure fibres in a garment: wool and silk in a wrap, for example.
All our yarns are selected for their natural beauty. This means that all of them can exhibit irregularities and variations in colour and texture. This is in the nature of natural fibres and hand dyed yarn. Together with our hands-on production process it makes every Wrapt piece unique in subtle ways.
For our first spring/summer collection we've added linen and silk to our fibre repertoire, while sticking faithfully to the merino wool and cotton we love so much.
Merino is as lovely to work with as it is to wear. Appreciation for its properties keeps growing among designers, manufacturers and consumers. It is anti-bacterial and odour resistant, and masterful at moisture management: small wonder the outdoor and active wear industries have embraced it. It is even used for aerospace products!
It is also so much more versatile than is often realised. It's good for cosy sweaters, yes - but in light weights it also works wonderfully for breathable summer tops and airy wraps.
South African merino comes mostly from the Eastern Cape, and is highly regarded the world over.
The gorgeous colours of our wool are thanks to Dana Biddle at Colourspun: her hand dyeing operation in Heidelberg Gauteng uses GOTS certified (eco-friendly) dye and techniques to obtain the most beautiful, colourfast shades.
Colourspun is female owned; it provides work to two people full time and two more part time.
If pre-treated properly (as our yarn is) merino is not scratchy at all*. It is soft, but robust, and will, with a bit of care, last for a very long time. For detailed care guidelines click here.
* Some people's skins react extra sensitively to wool. If you're not sure if you'd be able to wear our merino garments, get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll try make a plan to send you a small piece of knitting to touch & feel.
We use three different weights of cotton, for a range from light summer things to quite substantial sweaters. Our cotton is smooth and drapy and soft; we can practically guarantee you'll love wearing it! It, too, is hand dyed by Colourspun.
As lovely as it is, cotton is not unproblematic as a fibre.
The heavy environmental toll of cotton crops, together with the short life cycle of many cotton garments, has been well documented.
As a consequence there are many programmes underway to reduce the impact of cotton as a crop.
We work with an environmentally responsible supplier, who tries to ensure that the yarn that reaches us comes from sound sources. At the moment the cotton we are using originates in both SA and India.
We also take heart from the fact that our garments are not meant to be used for a season and disposed of, but to be worn for a long, long time!
LINEN & SILK
Our preference for working with locally grown fibres has had to take a small step back to allow us to include linen and organic silk in our summer range.
Linen is, sadly, not grown in SA at all. Ours comes from Lithuania, one of the key growers of the flax plant which linen derives from. It's quite strange to work with, with an almost grassy feel. We give every garment one wash prior to selling it: this softens and relaxes the fibres a bit, ensuring the lovely dry but drapey feel that makes linen lovers swoon. From here it's up to you: as it gets worn and washed it will get a little bit softer.
In case you're wondering: knitted linen doesn't crease the way fabric does. Cool, right?
For this season we are working less with the shiny version of silk, and more with so-called "silk noil": yarn spun from the leftovers of spun filament silk. Different colours are blended together to make up the yarn, creating a beautiful melange effect and a nubby texture. Fabric knitted from it is soft and light beyond belief.
Apart from silk noil we also use some filament silk (the lustrous stuff) and a very fine yarn that consists of a combination of silk and stainless steel! All courtesy of an inventive Japanese yarn producer.