I talked recently about sustainability and the different yarns in the shop that contribute to greater sustainability in the fiber world. First on my list was Noro, a company whose deep respect for nature flows through every fiber in every skein of every yarn.
Mr. Noro talks about the minimal processing his yarns undergo and the importance of maintaining the aspect of the raw materials that go into the fibers. You will absolutely see tiny bits of silk noile in Silk Garden, poofs of angora bloom from Okunoshima, and an occasional bit of dried grass will probably show up in Kureyon or Ito. It's part of the aesthetic, and it helps keep the yarn true to his vision of fibers that reflect their tag line World of Nature.
This season, Noro has taken that vision even further with a yarn that can trace its provenance all the way to Taranui, a tiny family-owned farm in New Zealand. The Gardner family has owned Taranui for generations and has been producing high-quality wool for the luxury fabric market. More recently, they have focused on a very special flock called Haunui.
The Haunui is an exclusive breed created by a particularly sustainable cross of New Zealand Halfbred* with Fine Romney stock. This breeding makes the Haunui naturally hardy and especially well-suited to the New Zealand conditions and gives them a lustrous and durable wool.
In addition, the Haunui sheep produce a range of beautiful natural colors, and this is what Noro is bringing you this season - five naturally beautiful colors of this rare and lovely wool. The Gardners carefully cultivate and separate these fleece by color to bring it to us
The raw wool is minimally processed according to Mr. Noro’s exacting standards to maintain the natural features and give knitters a closer connection to the animals that produced the fleece.
I think it is just the most beautiful collaboration ever. If you are interested in owning some of this rare and exclusive yarn, you may pre-order now for September delivery.
*New Zealand Halfbred is a registered sheep breed that was originally developed in the 19th century by crossing one or other of the English longwools such as Romney or English Leicester with the Merino. Halfbreds are farmed almost exclusively in the foothills of New Zealand's South Island high country, and currently make up only 4% of the national flock.
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