... and, on the subject of wool from across the Irish Aea, one of the side projects which has tickled me most pleasingly over the past few months has been with Mourne Textiles.
They're a very small weaving operation, founded in the 1950s, and they specialise in tweeds and wool-linens which are quite unlike anything else in the Isles.
We have used a couple of their cloths for garments this Autumn ...
One is a wonderful merino-wool tweed, made with custom-spun yarn in County Donegal. A very rich base colour of navy, nepped throughout with brighter blues and the occasional red and brown. Being as it is entirely merino wool, and woven on one of the Mourne workshop's narrow hand-operated looms, it is a very special cloth indeed.
For this cloth we have earmarked our overshirt and topcoat (a new development).
The other cloth from Mourne is more perhaps unique still: a wool-linen. Unusually springy and bobbly (technical terms). The base is wool, and the slubby blobs (another technical phrase) are linen.
For this, we've just finished a small run of work jackets for our stockists in Japan, and we'll make a second batch, which will hopefully appear on our website before the end of next month.
Next is a visit to the workshop, in the Mourne Mountains of Northern Ireland, at the start of September. Good fun.