This heavy winter kerchief is handwoven in the USA with extra soft Malabrigo Rios pure merino super wash wool that was made in Perú.
Hello! Hello! In this short video I am going to talk about and review a new yarn that I discovered, Malabrigo’s superwash merino yarn, Rios. I tested this yarn out by weaving a kerchief for my husband, and we were not disappointed.
So let me just tell you a little bit of the back story on this cool yarn company. Malabrigo is a family owned company based in Uruguay that has created 17 lines of yarn in over 300 hand-dyed color-ways. The company employs mostly women, trying to provide job opportunities for those who are less likely to find work. Malabrigo also employs environmentally safe practices trying to use as little water and as few chemicals as possible.
All of this is just icing on the cake of this delicious yarn. I wanted to try it because of its superwash quality and rich color options. The end result of the original project was to create a kerchief that my husband could wear snowboarding and not have it be completely felted on him by the end of the season.
I wove this kerchief with a solid black for the warp and the glitter color-way for the weft. It was so much fun to weave with! I used an advancing twill goose-eye to really showcase the glitter color which is really neat, it actually transitions from yellows to ochres creating an additional level of depth to the final fabric. This yarns’ thick and squishy nature also makes it really satisfying to see it being created on the loom.
This is the final product measuring around 35 by 35 inches.
The final kerchief is thick, squishy, and unbelievably warm. Because this yarn does have a fair amount of stretch, I wove this piece fairly loose expecting some shrinkage when it came off the loom and it was wet finished.
I was right. The width of the kerchief shrunk 31% and the length shrunk 11%. However, after I wet finished it, it fulled up and came together really nicely. After some testing we have concluded that it is great at blocking out the wind while keeping your warmth in. Its one of those pieces that after you wear it for a while and you take it off, your body misses the heat that it trapped.
The Rios yarn was really great weave with, it created an amazingly dynamic and beautiful fabric with a great drape. Its so amazing in fact that I am currently creating a production run of these so that you can purchase your own kerchief for the winter season and soon we will be carrying a variety of Malabrigo yarn so that you can create your own unique piece.
Malabrigo is a family owned yarn company located in Uruguay. They have developed a line of Hand-Dyed yarns of incredible softness with wonderful color variations. Their products are made out of the softest fibers available and inspired by nature, landscapes, places, art and everyday life. All of this is represented in the names of their 17 different yarns lines and more than 300 colors.
Malabrigo produces yarn because they are passionate about it. They believe in the pleasure of working with good-quality, carefully designed, subtly painted yarns. Their wish is to continue developing yarns and colors to inspire people around the world, and to be inspired by them in return.
malabrigo started small, when two brothers-in-law started dyeing wool in a kitchen back in 2005. After achieving some good results, they started selling a few skeins to the US and before they knew they had quickly grown to other countries in Europe and the rest of the world. To keep up with this growth, they needed to relocate to larger facilities and hire more employees.
This resulted in malabrigo’s mill which is located at Parque Tecnológico Industrial del Cerro, a Technology and Industry Park in Montevideo, Uruguay, where yarns are dyed and packed in large rooms with natural light.
In 2010 the factory added a flat-plate thermal heating system to decrease the environmental footprint. Using the power of the sun, the water tanks are heated for the various processes to make your favorite yarns. The company employs environmentally safe practices using as little water and as few chemicals as possible.
More recently the company added a new mill in Perú.
malabrigo employs mostly women of all ages, and always tries to give job opportunities to people that have fewer opportunities than the average.
Most of malabrigo yarns are made with 100% Uruguayan Merino wool. Uruguay has one of the biggest wool supplies in the world, and a very, very good wool with regards to softness.
Our wool is 100% produced by uruguayan farms that allow their sheep to go free-range through the hills and are herded by actual old-style shepherds. The controversial practice of mulesing does not exist in Uruguay
Some of our yarns use other fibers, such as Aquarella and Gruesa (100% Uruguayan Corriedale wool) or Silky Merino (a blend of our Merino and top-quality Silk) and Silkpaca (Baby Alpaca from Perú and top-quality Silk). We always ensure that our materials come from the best suppliers we can find around the world.
We are pleased to announce that Malabrigo is the proud owner of a flock of Merino and Corriedale sheep, who live on a ranch near our headquarters in Montevideo. Taking this step has been very important to us- we strive for sustainability and quality in all aspects of our business, and now we are able to have a direct hand in wool production from the very first step, and to ensure the humane, high-quality care of our happy little sheep. True, this flock isn’t enough to produce all of our yarn by a long shot- but they’re awfully cute. Welcome to the family, little guys! Should you happen to be in the Montevideo area, we invite you to visit our little sheepfold and say hello to the flock!
Malabrigo’s Commitment to Sustainability
As part of our ongoing effort to build a greener business, our Superwash manufacturing process now meets Oeko-Tex standards. This means our yarn is free from a range of harmful substances often found in manufacturing (such as formaldehyde, pesticides, heavy metals, and a variety of other toxins and carcinogens.)
In 2010 the factory added a flat-plate thermal heating system to decrease the environmental footprint. Using the power of the sun, the water tanks are heated for the various processes to make malabrigo yarns. The company employs environmentally safe practices using as little water and as few chemicals as possible.