It’s “Weigh Day”!
There is a lot of discussion among society regarding transparency within the clothing and textile industries, including how things are made and priced. When we are pricing pieces, prices are based on three things: the weight of fibre, the length of time it takes to create a piece (labour), and dyeing costs (materials and time). I’ve always felt this pricing method is fair and transparent as it reflects the different material and process costs, and even more so, the cost of labour.
No matter the piece, labour is always the most significant price factor, which makes sense when you consider our pieces are “yarn forward factory free”.
I always feel it is important, and interesting, to know about how things are made. It is part of the story of our knitwear.
A quick look at what is currently being created in the studio. We are feeling spring inspired even though snow is still on the ground.
This is a recently finished one-of-a-kind piece. Mountain inspired. Hand dyed in natural dyes. Handcrafted.
At the moment we are focused on one-of-a-kind pieces. Due to the Covid-19 situation supply chains are down, so we are creating with the fibre we have in stock.
Currently the online shop is in maintenance mode as I work on a few new pieces, but if you ever see something you like that is posted, just send me a message.
Do you ever look at how pieces are made, close up?
This is pretty cool, so I thought I would share it. This is a toque being tailored while being knit. It is a detail most people won’t notice, but it makes a huge difference. This tailoring makes for a classic shaped toque that follows the shape of the head. It takes twice as long to make a toque using this method, but the result is so nice. This style of toque is also zero-waste and incorporates hand stitching.
We are currently working on some new pieces. Summer scarves, statement pieces, and some classic knits. With this work in progress, the online shop is in maintenance mode for a few days. However, if you see something that interests you in the next few days, feel free to send a message and we can chat details.
Today we continue with the #marchmeetthemaker posts; the theme is “hands at work”.
Textiles created by hand, and factory free, are a rare thing in this era. The majority of the pieces we are currently creating are knit manually on flat bed style knitters.
Knitting, using vintage flat bed knitters is very physical work. Arms, shoulders, back and hands are active for hours. The average scarf ranges from 600 to 1300 rows. That equates to moving your arms, side to side knitting, 600 to 1300 times… constantly. I think most people think of knitting as being serene and relaxing, flat bed knitting is not, it’s physical labour.
In addition to producing knits with manual power, we also dye all our yarns by hand, in natural dyes, prior to knitting. This includes crafting the dyes, prepping the yarn, dyeing, rinsing, and skeining. In a world of mass production, the methods in which we create knitwear is very different.
During the month of March many creatives participate in #marchmeetthemaker , which is a way to share with others aspects of their creative process. The first prompt was “story”, which I thought would be nice to share.
W1 Hundred was born out of an interest of textiles, local fibres, and ethical, ecological and historic practices. I started knitting at age 6 and sewing at age 9. Add in an Art diploma and a fascination with natural dyeing, and a business was formed.
As the business progresses, it is interesting to see the challenges created by staying true to core values, especially in a world of mass produced product. However, the core values are the main story: factory free knits, carefully selected materials, natural dyeing, Canadian produced wool, and Canadian inspired pieces. Pieces built out of a belief in quality and process, and pieces crafted to last.