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By working with U.S. partners at every step of the apparel supply chain—ranchers, washers, dyers, millers, knitters, and sewers — we’re learning the issues and taking them head on to create a new standard.
IMPERIAL STOCK RANCH | SHANIKO, OR | MATERIAL SELECTION & RANCHING
Imperial Stock Ranch’s roots are about as deep as they get: the ranch’s original founder was born in a wagon as his family followed the Oregon Trail.
What is most important to us are the environmental practices painstakingly followed by owners Dan and Jeanne Carver.
Imperial Stock Ranch works under a conservation management plan, every step of which is carefully considered. Rain falling on their land and run-off from snow melt, is captured, stored and safely released into the ecosystem, protecting and recharging the water table. Livestock graze in a rotational system, stimulating root development in plants, which in turn, triggers revitalization of the plants. By not plowing the land, the Carvers avoid evaporation and water run-off from exposed soil. Implementation of these and a variety of practices under their conservation philosophy and management plan, has resulted in the return of ever increasing numbers of native salmon to spawn in the creeks. The conservation plan has also allowed the ranch to move forward in their positive carbon footprint journey, part of a long-term sustainable solution to climate change and global warming.
CHARGEURS WOOL | JAMESTOWN, SC | CLEANING
When we order yarn from Jeanne Carver, she begins by moving the shorn wool through the steps necessary to transform it to beautiful yarn. The first stop is at Chargeurs Wool in Jamestown, South Carolina, to be cleaned, carded and combed into wool top.
Chargeurs is held to the highest standards, and consistently exceeds those standards. They have a spotless environmental record, and by working through them, we’re making sure that the wool isn’t getting clean, by leaving everything else filthy.
G.J. LITTLEWOOD & SONS | PHILADELPHIA, PA | DYEING
We wanted our yarn to have a luxurious heather coloring, so the next step for us, is sending our clean wool to G.J. Littlewood and Sons in Philadelphia, a fifth generation dye house and one of only two remaining dye houses in the country that can do this style of finish.
Littlewood uses only reactive dyes in our wool, so that after the dyeing process has been completed, all the dyes used remain in the fiber and are not released into the water system. To put this into perspective, the textile dyeing industry currently contributes up to 20% of total industrial water pollution. At G.J. Littlewood that number is just about zero.
KRAEMER YARNS | NAZARETH, PA | SPINNING After dyeing, the wool makes its way to Kraemer Yarns in Nazareth, Pennsylvania. It may seem simple, but it turns out getting a clump of wool into perfectly even strands is no easy feat! It’s a multi-day six-step process involving blending, carding, pin drafting, spinning, winding, and twisting. The team at Kraemer Yarns are masters at it.
BALL OF COTTON | COMMERCE, CA | KNITTING
Once spooled, our yarn is sent to Ball of Cotton in Commerce, CA. They are one of the last remaining high-end knitters in the country. Because of their close proximity, we have been able to visit their facility and engage in face-to-face discussions about the best method of creating the perfect sweater. This is no shadow factory. We have watched every step of production and have been delighted to meet and learn from many of the 35 proud employees.
At Zady, we believe that process matters, and that each step of that process is tied inextricably to the final product.