Saturday, December 3, 2011
HAVE YOU ANY WOOL? NO!!
It certainly did not occur to me earlier this year when I dyed 5kg of 100gm skeins of wool in preparation for our group exhibition that it would be the last time I would be able to source my favorite un dyed Australian tapestry yarn. Australia is sitting reasonably well in the world economic slide and we are well known internationally for our high quality wool, but I can understand that businesses everywhere are tightening their belts and looking at what sells and what does not. I have been buying my tapestry yarn from this mill since I began weaving tapestry in 1992, the yarn is only available through word of mouth really as the mill does not advertise the tapestry yarns on their product list or shade cards and it is not available through their website which sells a lot of yarns overseas. This makes me wonder that if more people knew that this yarn was available and overseas orders were made easy via their website, would a lot more people be buying it? I have always dyed most of my own yarns, sometimes this is due to the colours not being available through other sources but mainly because other yarns are so much more expensive. The current price for 100 grams of this yarn is $6.00 AU other available Australian tapestry yarns are about $16.00 or $25.00 AU per 100 grams so you can see why for large tapestries I dye my own. On a tapestry eg 100cm x 100 cm depending on the warp setting it can take over 250 grams just to weave the top and bottom hems and you may have another 100 grams in waste when you cut the ends on the back in the finishing off. So as you can see you can very quickly have (if you are paying the higher price) up to $65 and over worth of wool used that is not seen in the front of the tapestry! Internationally are many weavers dyeing their own wool, and what kind of prices are they paying per kilogram for their yarns? I have received many emails over the past few years via my blog asking me where I buy my wool. Most people in their replies seem to be put off by the fact that the yarn has been only available through phone orders as most of the inquiries have been form other weavers who live overseas. Your thoughts on the subject are most welcome?