CLO MOR STORIES
(From the Clo Mor — Harris to Paris project)
Walk into a weaver’s shed. Out there. On a croft. Their home. In Harris. Or Lewis. Same island both. But different names. Look out at the rain, the sun, the land, the sea. Can you see? Meet the man. The woman. Their dogs. Their chickens and sheep. See the cloth. Hear the loom. Smell the wool. Yes, smell the wool. Like sheep and soil, meeting in the middle. In the Machair…
Dyed, dried, blended, carded, spun and warped. Ready for the weft, the weave, the weaver. The weaver, who sits all day in that shed. Ten, twelve hours at a time. Surrounded by cloth, by yarn, by wool, by tools, by the click clack rhythm of the loom.
Rain or shine. Dark or light. Wind and rain — pulling at tin roofs, leaking in, the whole sky battering at the door. And inside…Winding bobbins, loading shuttles or rapiers, pulling thread, changing draft, tying on….putting the world to right! There’s the weaver, feeding the cloth through the loom. A metre at a time. Pedalling. Not too fast, not too slow. Turning something into something else. Making.
And off it goes. Out to the world. On beams that go back to the mill for finishing and stamping.No stamp, no point. The official Orb that tells the story.
This Clo Mor, this Big Cloth.
Ready for the world. For designing, cutting, stitching. For catwalks, camera flash, fashionistas and global press. All round the world, Still wearing this noble cloth. Still finding new ways to work with ‘An Clo Hearach’.
Made in sheds. Only in Harris. Only by hand.
Walk into a weaver’s shed. And you’ll never be the same again.
This story is part of the Clo Mor — Harris to Paris exhibition, currently showing in Peacock Alley at the Waldorf Astoria, Edinburgh. Following the journey of tweed from the crofts of Harris and Lewis to the couture houses of Paris and beyond, we celebrate the tradition and heritage of the tweed process and its relevance in a global fashion industry that changes, literally, with every season. Visit us at harristoparis.com
A creative partnership between :
Mike Benson (berlinerbenson.com)
Malcolm Buick (athleticsnyc.com)
Martin Scott Powell ( martinscottpowell.com)
Thomas Hogben (video)
Will Flisk (music)
Stacey Powell (management)