Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Pic Today 9/18/12









FLAX TO LINEN

Before cotton or wool clothing,
there was linen . . .
the oldest textile in the world
(8,000 BC).

But before linen was woven and worn,
there was flax,
a fibrous grassy plant with long stems,
one of the first cultivated crops.

In the "fertile crescent", Egyptians harvested flax
for its fibers to make a fine fabric from its fibers.
(Ancient mummies were wrapped in this woven cloth.)

Fact is, flax fabric is linen.
They're one and the same.
(Linum is latin for "flax plant.")

The process is much the same since ancient times:

The stems are dried, and seeds removed.
The stems are crushed or "retted" to form strands,
and then combed and pulled to straighten.
Long, luxurious fibers can reach 12-15" (for finest linen),
which can then be spun into linen yarn.

Depending on grade, the yarn is then woven
into linen fabric and textiles.

Linen is cool in hot weather,
wears like iron, and
even stronger wet than dry.

(Photos taken at Kirkwood's Green Tree Festival,
"Folk Life Artisans" displays)




10 comments:

  1. Wooow! Amazing post!
    Thanks for sharing!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. oh yes a great post ! interessant and
    truly wonderful shots !

    ReplyDelete
  3. So beautiful, my favorite fabric and I notice the weaver is wearing linen, of course!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ton très beau reportage sur les gestes de ce métier d'antan, me fait penser,qu'ici, en Normandie, on cultive également le lin. Il m'est souvent arrivé de pratiquer le land art dans ces champs de lin qui sont d'une grande beauté, avant d'être transformés.
    Amicalement.

    Roger

    ReplyDelete

  5. · Great series of photos. Very well taught the process of linen.

    · hugs

    CR· & ·LMA
    ________________________________
    ·

    ReplyDelete
  6. wonderful photographs of an awesome plant into fabric!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for sharing this. Beautiful photos.
    I have never seen the process before.
    Wish you a nice week.
    From Hilda

    ReplyDelete
  8. Old and good traditions - interesting! Thank you for commenting my blog. Many greetings from Norway :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. The whole process is so amazing...sometimes my mom weaves at home, I love those days.
    xo,
    A.

    ReplyDelete