South Africa, Frances V.H, Toorbos Landing Knitwear
Product name: Toorbos Landing Knitwear
Type of product: Hand-spun & hand-knitted mohair jumper
Description (story of the item): Made from hand-spun and dyed mohair this is a free style handknitted garment. Due to the nature of its make-up every piece it totally unique.
Size: 32-34 (Small-Med)
Availability / stock level: Made to order, 3 months lead time
The Karoo & Mohair Story
Having grown up on a family farm in the Karoo that owns one of the oldest mohair studs, Frances has always had a deep affinity with this natural fibre and the origins of the threads.
South Africa, and more specifically the Karoo, is home to most of the world’s mohair farming. Mohair, one of the world’s most ancient, exclusive and sustainable natural fibres is one of the few, uniquely local luxury products.
Frances vH Mohair focus on the strengths and over-looked skills that are unique to the socio-economic make-up of South Africa’s textile industry. With a completely local supply chain, they help to create livelihoods and empower women artisans in remote areas whilst preserving culture, indigenous knowledge and traditional craftsmanship.
Every step of the process; from spinning the yarn to carefully trimming the finished rug is carried out by hand by women in rural communities whose skilled workmanship give the rugs their unique quality.
The quality and scarcity of the raw material, its unique African heritage and exquisite handcrafted workmanship, combine to create the most beautiful rugs which reflect their Karoo origin and the unique character of both maker and designer.
We feel strongly that a sustainable, circular economy does not start in factories; The process starts with rain, the delicate eco system of the land, the role of herdsmen, the importance of healthy animals to produce quality mohair. From raw fibre we move into the process of washing, cleaning, dyeing and spinning until finally the yarn ends up on the loom. In many ways weaving and finishing is the last few steps on an intricate supply chain.
Once you become attuned to the elements, actors and skill needed to get from farm to fabric you make differently, you think differently, you do not need more and more, you are selective and respectful of the timelessness of that piece. It turns a simple rug into an invaluable homemaker, passed down to the next generation who too will build homes and weave their own memories into it.
The past few months have affected every one of us, it has made us all stop and sit with constantly shifting new world. We believe the concept of luxury may evolve into a more abstract world view – clean air, open spaces, health, an appreciation for nature, lengthy, unrushed meals around a table with friends and family, and building homes which make you feel safe, calm, functional and a reflection of your world. We hope that this collection embodies this shift.
We believe that sought after items are going to pieces that are unique in their rarity, once-off works, sustainable, trend-free, timeless, unique to the individuals taste, and hand-made. In the age of heightened technology and doing most of our life through screens, we have seen a reactive pull towards hand-crafted, artisanal pieces with tactility, texture, imperfection, and character. There is a certain comfort and soul that hand-made objects have that is felt by users and cannot be replicated in mechanized mass made objects.