Somehow, British made throws were one of the very first items we felt compelled to make at London and Avalon.
What we were after were products with some wholesomeness, genuine craftsmanship and a real story rather than a cheap cashmere copy of what people mistake for luxury.
Our quest was very much centered on the British isles, from Wales to the Scottish borders and the North of Scotland. We had to find the softest yarns and the most skilful, traditional weavers. We wanted to get immersed in the ancestral processes and really understand what would make our throws unique.
Our videos on the making of our cashmere and woollen throws remain classics, nearly 10 years on…
What makes cashmere or wool so soft?
At the start, it is a yarn which has been combed or shorn from a goat (cashmere) or a sheep (lambswool) but it is in the journey of that yarn that the magic happens.
First the yarns need to be washed in very pure loch or river water in order to clear it of all impurities and this is where Scotland keeps an edge over the rest of the world, thanks to the high purity of its waters – On the cashmere video, you might spot the unusual colour of the water, a coppery brown … it is in fact tainted by peat which further enhances the purification process (this is the same prized water which is used to make luxury malt whiskeys) - it is really hard to describe just how pure the air and the water feel on these river banks. Mostly untouched by human activities, they act as a unique memory of our land before it was subject to intensive industrialisation. The nostalgia is tangible and I hope that it comes through the video…
Getting close to our artisans and to the land, the ‘terroir’ where our products come from is one of the most satisfying part of our business and of the creative process. It is awe inspiring and we want to ensure that the love which has gone into the making of each throw, the spinning of the yarns, the hand stitching of the borders emanates from each throw, every time you wrap yourself in one.
There is so much to discover about the process of weaving and finishing throws but we think that our videos do a better job than I could ever do… so relax, grab a glass of wine or a delicious coffee and treat yourself to a few minutes in the far away land of yesteryear – so little has changed in the way they are made, centuries on. My favourite machine is perhaps the pounding machine – you will spot it in black and white in the cashmere video – which is 150 years old, and the wood which is used to literally pound the cashmere fibers once they have been boiled to release their coating and acquire its silky, dreamy texture is the softest I have ever touched. That step is magical, if unexpected!
We hope that getting to know more about your products, you build a bond with them and through them with their makers and the land which has produced them, just for you to hold on, swaddle in, and get wrapped in for generations to come.
Usually, our luxurious Cashmere and Lambswool throws are made to order and can take a bit of time while our artisan craftsmen weave your selected colour yarn into your chosen design and size. We have a selection of throws in some of our favourite colours, all 'Wrapped and Ready' to go as a beautiful treat for yourself or a loved one.