If you were to ever pop by our Leith warehouse, chances are you would find a few members of The Tartan Blanket Co. team sitting at their desks bundled up in one of our recycled wool blankets. We think they're a perfect size, and the fact that they prevent unnecessary waste makes them even better!
Whether cosying up with them at home or using them to add colour and warmth to an outdoor wedding, it seems our customers love them just as much as we do.
We love that our customers always want to know more about our products. Here are answers to the most frequent questions we receive about our recycled wool blankets.
1. What are they recycled from?
Most of our recycled blankets are made with a combination of wool and material from old clothing and other products that would otherwise end up in landfills. This means there will be some polyester in your recycled wool blanket, though the blanket's exact makeup differs with every batch.
2. What's the wool content?
All of our recycled wool blankets in a specific tartan are 70% wool, while the other 30% is made up of other fibres from recycled material we previously mentioned.
3. Where are they made?
India! There is a huge textile recycling industry in India where countries around the world (including the UK) ship their unwanted textiles. We’ve not been able to find anything comparable in the world. Old clothing and textiles are sorted by colour, broken down and respun into new yarn which can then be woven into blankets. By sorting the items into colours the amount of dying required is significantly reduced. Blue sweaters become blue yarn which is woven into blue blankets. Some colours (whites and blacks) are not dyed at all. If any additional dying is required, safe AZO free dyes are used to ensure vibrant long lasting colour. When the recycled woollen fibres get broken down for respinning, they become quite short which can be difficult for weaving. Mixing them with other recycled fibres, such as polyester from the production waste of synthetic spinning plants or unwanted recycled clothing add strength, allowing for a dense and durable weave that is even machine washable.
Our partner mills in India also employ a large, primarily female workforce to hand finish the fringing on our blankets, and it’s not because it’s faster or better. In fact it’s slower and results in a bit more irregularities, but relying on people instead of efficient machinery allows us to support a community in need of work opportunities for women.
4. What do they feel like?
Super cosy! They are our thickest blankets and our TBCommunity often mention they love how snuggly the weight is. the best way to describe the texture is smooth and you can feel how durable they are. That's what makes them great for picnic blankets too!
5. Can you wash them?
We always recommend dry cleaning your wool blankets, as they're easy to shrink if washed incorrectly.
Be sure to give your blankets a good shake before popping them in the machine to remove any loose bits of debris.
You can machine wash your blankets if you have a gentle wool or handwash setting. Be sure to use a speciality wool detergent at a low temperature, as heat and friction can shrink or distort your wool's shape.
Wool settings tend to be pre-set at 40 degrees, but be sure to reset it to 20 degrees or colder to avoid shrinkage.
Air dry your wool blanket for best results, as using the tumble dryer or placing your blanket on the radiator can also lead to shrinkage.
Every machine is different, so we can't guarantee that washing your blanket will be problem free - but, we've tried this method ourselves and our recycled wool blankets turned out just lovely.
6. What tartans can I choose from?
Our recycled wool blanket currently come in small, large, extra large, picnic & pet. Click here to shop all available tartans!