We are thrilled to introduce you to Sero, our newest line of yarn, a 3/15 silk noil. We launched Sero for pre-order in January, and expect to have it available to ship in mid February. Stay tuned! The pre-order has closed, but you can read more about Sero below.
Sero has a soft hand, exquisite drape, and matte texture, which makes it perfect for luxurious shawls, scarves, cowls, and other garments. It is strong enough for warp, and works equally well on multi-shaft and rigid heddle looms.
We had long been dreaming of making our own in-house line of silk, and we were drawn to silk noil specifically because of its matte texture and soft, luscious hand that lends itself to scarves, shawls, and other garments.
This endeavor required a completely different sourcing process from any of our other yarns. Silk worms are farmed primarily in Asia (especially India and China), so we needed to find a textile mill close to the source. We knew we wanted to put the same care and attention into building our manufacturing relationships for this yarn as we do for all of our in-house yarn lines that we make domestically and in Peru. We were looking for a company that was creating beautiful, quality silk while putting a lot of care and attention into how their production impacted the people making the yarn, and the places where it was made.
We were thrilled to find these things in Bombyx Silk. Bombyx works with silkworm farmers in Nanchong’s Yilong County, in the northeast of Sichuan province in China. They are working to shift silkworm farming in that region to regenerative agriculture, which aims to build a self-sustaining ecosystem using rotational cropping, intercropping, terrace farming, and biological pest control. Shifting from mono-crop agricultural systems to ones with more diversity helps to build up soil nutrients, and allows farmers to diversify their income streams and make more steady and dependable wages.
Shifting to this kind of system can sound really good on paper, but be quite challenging to put into place in practice. Encouraging farmers to change systems they have used for many years requires a lot of community buy-in and trust that can take a long time to develop.
Bombyx is also in the process of building new manufacturing plants, so they can control all aspects of their production from farming through to spinning, twisting, dyeing, and winding, with the intention of using more environmentally-friendly manufacturing processes, and obtaining certifications that can prove these to consumer. Building new manufacturing plants takes a lot of financial investment, with the hope but not the guarantee that future customers will find this to be worth it and be willing to pay extra for silk grown and manufactured in this way. One of the things we really appreciated about Bombyx is their transparency about where they are in the process, where they hope to get to, and the challenges they face along the way.
We encourage you to watch this video to learn more about them: