MAKING SILK

A silk scarf is one fashion accessory that offers endless possibilities for enhancing your wardrobe. Silk scarves range from lightweight to delicate and gossamer light, they drape beautifully and can be worn in countless ways, for example, as a shawl, an accent piece, a head covering and belts and sashes. They can add flair and dash to a style, or can add a subtle, refined accent. They can be tied, secured with a jewelry broach, or left to flow gently.

HOW SILK IS MADE

For centuries silk has rightfully enjoyed a reputation as a luxurious and sensuous fabric, one associated with wealth and success. It is one of the oldest textile fibers known to man.

Cultivation is a difficult process that begins with the silk moth. The moth lays hundreds of eggs about the size of a pinhead that are examined and discarded if they are diseased. The eggs are then put in cold storage for six to ten months until the mulberry trees bud.

After incubation, the eggs hatch into larvae. For about a month these larvae live in a carefully controlled environment eating cleaned, chopped mulberry leaves. They grow quickly and become caterpillars called silk worms. The silk worm is quite discerning about its environment. If the conditions are less than ideal, the silkworm produces inferior silk, or no silk.

The silkworm then starts to spin a cocoon for itself to protect it while it transforms into a moth. A single cocoon yields 1,600 – 5,280 feet of continuous filament. It is this length of fiber that makes silk fabric unlike any other type of fiber.