Sometimes we are drawn to work with a particular yarn because the color speaks to us, at times its the texture or quality of the fiber; and occasionally our selection can be influenced by larger, global considerations. When our choice makes a positive impact on folks we’ve never met, every one of us wins.
For over a decade, we have sourced the organic cotton used in our Cotton Comfort yarn from the folks at the Texas Organic Cotton Marketing Cooperative. They work exclusively with small family run farms in and around Lubbock, Texas.
“This region of Texas, the heart of “the world’s largest cotton patch,” is well-suited to the production of organic cotton. Winter temperatures are cold enough to limit insect pressure and provide a hard freeze to defoliate the cotton plants prior to mechanical harvest. In addition, a sunny climate and quick-drying soils facilitate timely weed control.”
Their certified organic fiber is tracked from the field to the bale and so we know exactly where our fiber comes from and whom to thank.
When interviewed for The True Cost, La Reah Pepper (an organic cotton farmer who grew up just south of Lubbock, TX) speaks passionately about the benefits of organic growing practices.
“Organic promotes life and creates solutions. Organic agriculture promotes life in the soil, increased bio-diversity, increased food-security, ability to mitigate impacts of climate change with stronger carbon sequestration, the reduced use of irrigation where that applies, and the elimination of toxic and persistent pesticides from the water we drink and the air we breathe. It is also life for communities, catalyzing job creation with the increased crop selections as a result of the shift from a mono-crop culture and the employment of more people to care for the crop during the growing season.
It also means life for farm families ensuring that their fields are safe places to work and to play – to live!!”
We’ve been lucky to work with the team at Texas Organic who have always been able to send us a bale of the best quality cotton that meets our staple length specifications. Since it is currently only used in our Cotton Comfort yarn and a few of our custom lot projects, it usually takes us a few years to work through the hundreds of pounds of cotton when it arrives. But from the warmth and kindness we’ve always enjoyed when working with Kelly Pepper, you’d think that we were their best customers.
Kate recently completed a project using our Cotton Comfort that was inspired by her trip to Stitches West in Santa Clara. We asked her to bring a bit of that Californian sunshine back with her, and she did in the form of a beautifully sunny shawl!
Using Isabell Kraemer’s Paris Toujours pattern, and three skeins of Yarrow Cotton Comfort, she quickly knit up a delightfully squishy and comforting wrap. She found the lace repeat called for in the pattern was easily memorized making it a perfect project for a long flight. Her project grew quickly as she flew across the country and back and now she has an accessory that will brighten her days when showers are in the forecast.
We hope that when you are interested in casting on for a project that calls for a DK weight yarn, you might consider using our Cotton Comfort line. Your choice will have a larger impact than you might have imagined.