Dashing Tweed – Wool Is Where It’s At
When it comes to tweed, wool is where it’s at. The starting point not only to Dashing Tweeds but to probably one of the biggest, most lucrative industries Great Britain has known.
There is evidence of wool being spun and woven in the country as far back as the Bronze age four thousand years ago and by the fourteenth century wool exports became the backbone of our economy. The vast riches from our wool trading over 800 years ago, can still be seen today by visiting awe inspiring cathedrals such as Norwich and Ely.
Fast forward to the industrial revolution and by the mid nineteenth century over a quarter of our industrial output was from British textiles sold the world over.
It’s hard for us to realise the importance of wool. Politicians have a daily reminder from the Woolsack in the House of Lords, but for most of us the role of wool in our history and its relevance today is a bit of a mystery.
I’ve really been enjoying learning more about wool and over the next few months I’m going to share with you some of my newly acquired knowledge. I’ll try not to bamboozle you with the names of our 60 plus native sheep breeds and with the deftness I observed as skilled workers at Wool House, Bradford sorted fleeces into 130 different grades.
Whilst sharing the story of wool, we will follow the rise and fall of wool prices, the fibre to fashion journey and learn just how important wool is for our future.
The global spotlight is now rightly focused on the toxic fast fashion industry, they have pulled the wool over our eyes; over producing oil based clothing that no one values. Sustainability and the welfare of our planet depends on us radically shifting our ideas on fashion, understanding where our clothes are produced and most importantly caring about how we dress with longevity in mind. I feel that wearing wool and delving into our thousand years of sheep knowledge will help us all.