Touch the Earth lightly.
We live in a beautiful place between the moor and the sea, and our wish is to just embrace the living world and to be kind. We start with the fleeces we use, hand grading and sorting, any soiled sections too bad to spin and any vegetable matter go in the compost bins, we grow some great veg! The fleeces are spun then skeined, these are then soaked in a number of freshwater baths, again nothing wasted this grey water makes the perfect plant food and is stored till needed. The last baths are with organic soaps, or with the soap we make here from the soapwort plants we grow.
We dry the yarn naturally in the open air, in the summer months this is over the lavender and sweet pea plants but even in the winter the yarn is often infused with the scent of heather and the moor.
Then after a chat with the fleece’s owner and a good look at the yarn a design is chosen, we want always to bring out the best in the fibre, to allow it a space to sing.
Weaving takes place on one of four floor looms, big old machines that are hand and foot operated, we oil all the equipment with organic oil only and the warps are organic cotton that is ethically sourced. We have tried other warps and may switch to hemp next year if we can have total traceability.
Once the rug is woven and trimmed and finished (again all trimmings are kept for pillow stuffing) we send in brown boxes with paper tape, never any plastic or unnecessary packaging. The boxes can go on the compost and disappear.
As we have often said you can take one of our rugs and lay it on the moor that surrounds our home and slowly over years it would gently become one again with the earth leaving no dyes, chemicals or waste. It is this ethos that has led us into weaving shrouds for green burials, often we weave lavender, seashells and even much-loved saved pet hairs into the cloth, these are a real privilege to create, and such a wonderful way to touch the earth.
We take what we do seriously, and our first rugs were woven in 1979 (must have been child labour), but the rest of life can be fun! Love from a small croft on a small island X