When we design a new scarf, quality comes first. It is important to us that our scarves are reversible, have a perfect edge and drape well. But we also want to appeal to the sense of touch by creating sumptuous textures, the visual sense by using harmonious colour combinations and the spirit by dreaming up cheerful patterns. Yarns and colours have always stimulated our creativity. After all these years we still have great fun when the new shade cards arrive, and we get to mix colours to harmonise with each other, to fade into each other, or sometimes even to clash. It’s just as Joseph Albers said: “Colour is like cooking. The cook puts in more or less salt, that’s the difference!” Scarves have given us a great canvas to express our creativity and we love that they make people happy.
Having trained as handweavers, our work is based on a deep understanding of structures and textures, and also the knowledge of how yarns and colours interact. Weaving and knitting are a form of construction; it takes creativity, mathematical skill, technical understanding and dexterity to create a good cloth. We produce our woven styles on carefully restored Hattersley Domestic looms, which because of their narrow width are ideally suited to weaving scarves. The 19th century technology creates a woven selvedge which is a superior finish and a feature reminiscent of handwoven textiles.
Since we started our business in 1985 we have continuously strived to advance our design and production possibilities. While weaving on Victorian shuttle looms restricts us to colour and texture, modern knitting technology has given us the capability to work with much more elaborate structures and patterns. Knitting programs are created on special computer software and are then fed into the knitting machines. For us as designers and makers, knitting has opened a door into a whole new world.
Woolly or silky, fine or chunky, smooth or textured - we make scarves for all occasions. We use many different weights of the finest quality natural yarns for our scarves. We create interesting structures by mixing and matching different yarn compositions, whilst always focusing on achieving comforting softness and good drape. Our woven collection is produced by using double sided structures like plain and basket weave, herringbone, broken and undulating twills and rip weave. For our knitted scarves we use structural stitch combinations, lace and jacquard techniques. When scarves are worn, both sides are visible, so it is important to us that we use reversible patterns. While the colour balance can be different, the knitting structure is usually the same on both sides. We love working with our head, hands and heart and it is giving us great satisfaction to hand our knowledge down to our apprentices, so the art of textile manufacturing stays alive and continues in Ireland.