Famous for being the cold end of the UK, it is no wonder Scotland can offer so many top quality knitwear manufacturers. The knitwear industry is part of the heritage of Scotland, and in particular the Scottish Borders, where there is a tradition in textiles manufacturing going back two centuries. Clothing and knitted accessories are a major and growing sector of the Scottish textiles industry, combining traditional skills with contemporary design and practical applications.
The Scottish Borders is home to famous brands such as Pringle of Scotland and manufactures everything from basic knitted accessories such as winter scarves, hats and gloves, to sophisticated cashmere clothing. Scotland's knitwear manufacturers are renowned for producing the best in the world, and the softness of the water in the Scottish Borders is said to make the extra difference to the finish of garments produced in the area.
Competition is fierce with imports pushing knitwear prices down and forcing the knitwear manufacturers to look for new ways to differentiate their products. Scottish knitwear manufacturers can no longer survive purely on their reputation for quality, and the focus is increasingly on pioneering design and new manufacturing techniques.
Of course the latest fashions are a key driver in the knitwear industry and items such as wool scarves are no longer just for winter, with scarf colours, widths and lengths changing to suit the seasons.
London Fashion Week and other fashion events around the world feature some novel uses of the good old traditional wool scarf, and not only in the way they are worn. Wool can be blended with other fibres, natural and man-made, to create some very special textures.
At the lower end of the market nylon can be mixed with wool to make scarves cheaper to produce, more resilient and easier to wash. Of course a nylon wool mix scarf never has the same nice cosy feel or warmth to it. At the luxury end of the knitwear market manufacturers mix silk and wool to give a nice weight of scarf, which drapes nicely. Cashmere, silk, and wool give a really luxurious, super-soft finish.
So for the moment, the future looks bright for the Scottish knitwear industry and wool manufacturers in particular.
About the author:
Written on behalf of The Scarf Company - manufacturers of quality wool scarves, hats and gloves for women, men and children.
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