Originally, the foundation of our textile work was hand rolled felt, and this continues to play a large part in the pieces that we create. Based in West Wales, we work with wool sourced exclusively from UK flocks, which we use to produce individual and contemporary felted objects: wearables, home textiles, wall hangings and 3-d pieces.
Recently, we have been drawn to other sustainable fabrics and a greater use of plant dyes. The fabrics in question: hemp fabric from Romania and organically grown cotton.
The process we follow includes cleaning, combing and dyeing raw fleece, sewing, printing and embellishment. We also purchase ready prepared fibres – scoured and combed – from British suppliers.
We work with wool in its natural undyed state, or prepared and dyed using plants or specialist commercial woollen dyes. For texture and colour, silk and other fibres including homespun yarn and UK alpaca are incorporated into the felt. We marry our handmade felt with leather, driftwood, beads and found objects to produce one-off items.
The hemp fabrics are not certified organic, but the textile has been prepared by a dedicated and specialist company who are committed to production methods that are environmentally low impact, using techniques that have developed over hundreds of years. We deal directly with the producer, allowing us to fully trace the sources of the fabric and be assured of the production methods used.
The cotton is organically certified, prepared to GOTS standards, and imported by Organic Textile Company of Machynlleth.
We are currently using two types of leather. The first is British sourced veg tanned leather.
The second is beautiful oak tanned belly leather, prepared in Devon from cattle farmed by Wild Beef.
So: what’s with the name?
Greenweeds. There’s ‘green’ for a start, ecological, local, urrrmm, ‘green’. Whilst ‘Weeds’ is an ancient word for clothing. We sometimes use plant dyes, including nettles, rosebay willow herb and ivy out of our very Welsh and weed ridden garden. Which have become green-weeds, now they’re being put to use. And the Welsh Fairy Book by W. Jenkyn Thomas tells the tale of the Man with the Green Weeds, a somewhat eerie tale of a spirit bringing a sticky end to an English man on the Dolgellau to Llanegryn road at Llyn Gwernen.
So there is some reasoning to our choice of name, but hey, it’s just a name. Hopefully it will grow on you….