Craft and Textiles / Craft

Bristol to get its own unique cloth

By joanna booth, Monday Aug 3, 2015

Bristol will soon be getting its own unique cloth.

A competition is now open to find a design for the new cloth which will be a 100 per cent wool fabric of classic heritage-inspired design, prioritising locally-sourced materials and manufacturing processes from the South West.

Bristol Textile QuarterBotanical InksFernhill FleeceDash + Miller and The Bristol Weaving Mill Ltd have joined forces to produce the Bristol Cloth and are inviting Bristol and the South West’s creative communities to get involved. 

There may be a trail of sheep in Bristol at the moment but this wool will be made from the fleece of sheep grazing at Fernhill Farm in the Mendip Hills.

“Bristol does not have its own sheep although the surrounding countryside obviously does,” Emma Hague from The Bristol Textile Quarter told Bristol24/7.

“The main issue is that we also have no local spinning facility, plus spinning facilities across the countryside are often difficult and expensive because, for example, they only spin certain kinds of wool, or only in certain volumes. For the Bristol Cloth we have chosen a spinner in Halifax because he can work with smaller volumes, ensure traceability and produce a good result with the fleece that we source from Fernhill Farm.”

With Bristol as Europe’s Green Capital in 2015, what better time than now to explore how a more resilient, local textile might look?

The competition is open to anyone with a South West postcode providing their design is submitted in the required format. Full details of the design brief and technical specifications can be found at www.bristolcloth.co.uk.

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