S - Marzotto Tessuti
Silk is a protein fibre of animal origin, used to make fine fabrics. Legend tells that silkworm farming began with the Chinese empress Xi Ling Shi, but it is likely that silk was already being produced in China around 3000 BC. The silkworm secretes a filament whose length can vary from 350 metres to 1 km, which it uses to make a cocoon. The main physical characteristics of silk fibres are strength, elasticity, length and fineness. Silk is the only continuous natural fibre, since the filaments can be between 800 and 1000 metres long. The filament is insulating, heat-retaining, breathable and hygroscopic. It can absorb up to 25% of its weight in water without feeling wet, and its smooth surface makes it resistant to stains. Silk is used for men's and women's clothing, combed or carded. It can be used alone or blended with wool.
Shetland wool comes from the Isle of Shetland. It is soft and fine like merino, but with a coarser and drier hand. This characteristic is typical of the Shetland breed of sheep, which are raised on the cold islands of northern Scotland. The harsh climate has made the fleeces of this breed tougher, and they are often multicoloured. Shetland wool is used to make exquisite fabrics.