Te Kooti Milkymerino™

  

Our favourite fabric of all is Te Kooti Milkymerino™ which is a very special super fine merino wool that is being developed by Australian wool growers Hansie and Gary Armour with whom we are working closely with.  A woollen fabric that is able to be worn against sensitive skin.  In the future we will develop further Australian made fabrics with Te Kooti, both knitted and woven.  We will be able to blend Milkymerino™ with other eco friendly natural fibers to create truly exclusive new collections.

Image Left: Gary Armour feeding Pet Sheep “Mini Moo” with her favourite treat - Jatz Biscuits.

The wool is grown by farming families that have been breeding sheep for 5-6 generations for COMFORT factors of 100%.  Wools with these comfort factors do not require chemical processing when they are not inappropriately blended with inferior, short or genetically different types.  The wool therefore maintains ALL the benefits of the natural wool.  The farms are some of only a few farms ALMS ISO 14001 compliant and working toward ISO certification.  They are leaders in sustainable management and are striving to create a carbon neutral supply chain partnership that produces a Carbon Positive Garment. 




Strong healthy sheep from these farms produce good strength and quality fiber especially when grazing on Australia’s natural native pastures grown in healthy balanced soils.  These management systems allow farms to rebuild their soils and build up the carbons so that their animals then become healthier and ultimately it will allow us to return to the "organic ways".

Image Left: Mini Moo in the Kitchen with Hansie Armour and grand daughter. 

To live up to their principals of sustainability these farms will always do what is best for their animals and soil first and in that order.  Their farms have open gates for their customers and partners in the supply chain.

The newest and, we believe, the only fabric produced by a totally transparent and controlled supply chain right from the Farm to the shop without the use of harmful chemicals.  A textile able to be dyed with natural dye processing and materials.  We are therefore working with artisans who eco-dye the fabric using leaves, flower petals, vegetables, fruit and other plant matter so each piece is a work of art and no two garments are exactly the same – hence it is wearable art. 

Image Left: Mini Moo with her twins “Crackers” and Jatz".

We have had some delays in developing the fabric due to the fires in NSW in 2013 when the entire farm was nearly lost with a raging bushfire closing in from all four fronts.  It was only due to the wonderful firefighters and incredible luck that the farmhouse, some shedding and most of the livestock were saved. Hansie, Gary and the firefighters all suffered burnt wind pipes, oxygen deprivation and smoke inhalation as it came that close.  It seems that by prespraying the house with water and due to the lack of oxygen left in the air the fire actually jumped over them to get more oxygen.  All consider themselves lucky to be alive.

Minimoo was supposed to be in the house paddock but after the fires passed they were unable to find her. It was with great relief that the next morning she emerged from underneath the surviving wool shed leading around 200 sheep that they had not had time to round up and also had thought to have been lost so Minimoo was the hero of the day as she took off to rescue the mob and lead them to safety.  The bull on the farm is also amazing as he pushed all the cows into a dam to save them. 

So quite a set back.  All fencing was lost, animals had to be relocated to other farms until the fencing was replaced but Hansie and Gary are recovering and we will get back to it all in 2016.

 

 

 

Image left: The firefront from the back door of the farmhouse.
Image second left:
 Minimoo joining in the meeting with the firefighters.
Image second right: Gary exhausted but relieved to have Minimoo safe so treat time.
Image far right: Mopping up the next day.

Te Kooti Milkymerino™ is a "marriage made in heaven" a perfect blend to meet the needs of a… "TOTALLY SUSTAINABLE TEXTILE"

Some garments made from Eco Dyed Te Kooti Milkymerino

Z0062
Dyed by Zephlyn 
Nielsen
using Shibori method 
with
fresh acorns and bark
 


Z0053
Dyed by Zephlyn Nielsen
using Shibori method with
old acorns and bark


Z0033
Dyed by Kate Martin
with fruits, vegetables,
flowers and leaves