The knitwear thread

Kingstonian

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I saw this article. I wonder what the factory shop for Lockie is like.

If you are in the market for cashmere and UK based it might be worth a visit.
 

The Shooman

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A treasure?

There is this bloke called Joseph Philip who hand looms his own Scottish knitwear. Check this out!


his prices are really good too:

here is a 5 ply he made himself:
Joseph Phillip knitwear 5 ply.jpg


I wonder if l could order a MTM 12 ply off him. Hmmm.

I just write to him and will let you know what he says. I asked him of he could do a MTM 12 - 14 ply thick densely knitted crewneck jumper and how his quality compared to brands like William Lockie.
 

Kingstonian

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A treasure?

There is this bloke called Joseph Philip who hand looms his own Scottish knitwear. Check this out!


his prices are really good too:

here is a 5 ply he made himself:
View attachment 32927

I wonder if l could order a MTM 12 ply off him. Hmmm.

I just write to him and will let you know what he says. I asked him of he could do a MTM 12 - 14 ply thick densely knitted crewneck jumper and how his quality compared to brands like William Lockie.
Seems very cheap. I assume you would not expect him to do cashmere. As he is 80 years old I would not hassle him either. Maybe stick with a garment he has already made.
 

The Shooman

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Seems very cheap. I assume you would not expect him to do cashmere. As he is 80 years old I would not hassle him either. Maybe stick with a garment he has already made.
I was thinking about cashmere but was also having doubts because sourcing good cashmere could be risky. Anyway, he wrote back to me last night and said this:

"thanks for your message. Unfortunately I'm almost 81 and no longer make jumpers as I have retired. This is the last of my stock. I do still plod away with beanies but I no longer have the enough yarn to make big items.
All the best Joe"


Well, it looks like the end of that. All dreams are dashed.
 

Kingstonian

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While you are on here. What about Barrie of Hawick?

They have reasonably priced stuff in House of Bruar catalogue. Not the mega ply garments you seek but they seem to be Scottish based and a decent price.

I will probably visit Hawick some time just for a look around. Cashmere is a bit pricey for me, given the moth danger.
 

The Shooman

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While you are on here. What about Barrie of Hawick?

They have reasonably priced stuff in House of Bruar catalogue. Not the mega ply garments you seek but they seem to be Scottish based and a decent price.

I will probably visit Hawick some time just for a look around. Cashmere is a bit pricey for me, given the moth danger.
Is Barrie of Hawick the same as Barrie? If it is then it is probably very good. Much of their stuff goes for well over $1,000 for simple 2 ply cashmere knits. Chanel bought the factory because they wanted to ensure that quality from Scotland was guaranteed for the future.

It makes me wonder who makes Hermes cashmere jumpers now. Maybe Barrie does them.
 

The Shooman

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Wasn't that Mcgeorge they bought?
No. Mc George was made in China for a while. Mc George also produced a label for Ballantyne, BUT it would seem that Ballantyne is just a registered name and has nothing to do with Scotland what so ever. Tricks of words to try and trade on a company's old heritage. China is well known for such tricks. Doesn't inspire much confidence in a company when they have to resort to such tricks.
Ballantyne - made in China.jpg



but alas, l find this. Looks like things are looking up for Mc George once again. Who would have ever thought that people would be smart enough to move production from China back to Scotland again. The thing is....Chinese goods often cost so much these days, often many hundred dollars for cashmere jumpers, but they have a label many people loathe (made in China), so why not get some confidence and locate back in Scotland, make a better product and charge hundreds of dollars to beat their competition.

Such a terrible website though, the public are unable to buy directly from them so we basically write them off and never give them another thought. They need to get smarter.
Historic cashmere brand to recommence trading

None-the-less, they are designing collections. :rolleyes:
 
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doghouse

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That's the article I was referring to. Some fashion brand is propping them up, I thought it was Chanel but most be someone else.
 

The Shooman

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That's the article I was referring to. Some fashion brand is propping them up, I thought it was Chanel but most be someone else.
Chanel bought Barrie a while back, but you never know what has happened behind the scenes. Some fashion brand that appreciates quality has probably gone to great efforts to bring them back to Scotland. Who gets their stuff made in Scotland?...it could be Hermes, Chanel, Thom Brown or a few others. They know that made-in-Scotland knitwear is an endangered species and want to keep the skills alive before it all dies out, so they did what Chanel has done. Interesting heh.


Oh look, it could be an Italian fashion company called Fedeli who is a partner with Mc George who has had a hand in them locating back top Scotland. Why? "our main partner Fedeli buys his cashmere yarns in Scotland".

Mc George has some wonderful looking stuff.
 
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doghouse

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Thanks Kingstonian.

FWIW, Johnston's stuff has always been quality in my experience.
 

Kingstonian

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Shooman you might want to investigate the yarn manufacturer.

Todd and Duncan are mentioned in the Barrie descriptions and it seems they are the only surviving Scottish yarn producers.

 
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No. Mc George was made in China for a while. Mc George also produced a label for Ballantyne, BUT it would seem that Ballantyne is just a registered name and has nothing to do with Scotland what so ever. Tricks of words to try and trade on a company's old heritage. China is well known for such tricks. Doesn't inspire much confidence in a company when they have to resort to such tricks.
View attachment 32931


but alas, l find this. Looks like things are looking up for Mc George once again. Who would have ever thought that people would be smart enough to move production from China back to Scotland again. The thing is....Chinese goods often cost so much these days, often many hundred dollars for cashmere jumpers, but they have a label many people loathe (made in China), so why not get some confidence and locate back in Scotland, make a better product and charge hundreds of dollars to beat their competition.

Such a terrible website though, the public are unable to buy directly from them so we basically write them off and never give them another thought. They need to get smarter.
Historic cashmere brand to recommence trading

None-the-less, they are designing collections. :rolleyes:
Shooman, this is excellent news thanks for sharing. I looked at their site and their new pieces look pretty good with some modernized knit pieces as well as some old favorites like the shawl and aran fisherman sweater. I feel Scotland deserves a resurgence, considering the history of the cashmere mills within the area and the quality standard that they created.

I recently acquired a Mc George piece myself which is probably a 3 or 4 ply but unfortunately it is too large for me. I'll probably sell it or gift it to a family member.

berk_mcgeorge_cashmere.jpg


berk_mcgeorge_cashmere_2.jpg
 
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Here is another piece I recently acquired that was made in Scotland for Brooks Brothers. I am not sure if they used their own mill or outsource it to one of the mills there? Perhaps one of you knows about this. It is a full-zip cable knit sweater in at least a 6 ply so I am pretty happy with it. It fits me perfectly and is quite lofty and warm. Considering it has been averaging highs of -1 to 6 degrees Celsius this past week or 30 to 43 degrees Fahrenheit, it's a necessity out here. It already snowed multiple times as well.

brooksbrothers_full_zip_cable_knit.jpg


brooksbrothers_full_zip_cable_knit_2.jpg




brooksbrothers_full_zip_cable_knit_3.jpg
 
Messages
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I was thinking about cashmere but was also having doubts because sourcing good cashmere could be risky. Anyway, he wrote back to me last night and said this:

"thanks for your message. Unfortunately I'm almost 81 and no longer make jumpers as I have retired. This is the last of my stock. I do still plod away with beanies but I no longer have the enough yarn to make big items.
All the best Joe"


Well, it looks like the end of that. All dreams are dashed.
Sorry to hear your dreams were dashed, his sweaters look to be of really good quality. I can understand how his age might make it difficult to knit larger items now. I am sure there are some knitters out there who would be happy to knit MTM custom cashmere sweaters in a super thick 12 ply. Do you know where you can buy cashmere yarn in such thick ply, I figure it is pretty rare. I know they sell it here - https://www.purlsoho.com/12-ply-cashmere.html

I figure just purchasing the fabric alone would be quite costly. I think a 12 or 16 ply wool cable knit would be more cost effective for me personally. Have any of you purchased some of the super fat hand knit sweaters sold on Etsy or on other sites?

I found these on Etsy for example: From the shop named TheTiffyMohair
I have a feeling they will probably pill a lot.

tiffymohair_wool_turtleneck_etsy.jpg


tiffymohair_wool_turtleneck_chunky)etsy.jpg
 

The Shooman

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Sorry to hear your dreams were dashed, his sweaters look to be of really good quality. I can understand how his age might make it difficult to knit larger items now. I am sure there are some knitters out there who would be happy to knit MTM custom cashmere sweaters in a super thick 12 ply. Do you know where you can buy cashmere yarn in such thick ply, I figure it is pretty rare. I know they sell it here - https://www.purlsoho.com/12-ply-cashmere.html
I haven't given up yet. I plan to network and try to find someone in Scotland who can loom at least a 12 ply.


knitwearaddict said:
Have any of you purchased some of the super fat hand knit sweaters sold on Etsy or on other sites?

I found these on Etsy for example: From the shop named TheTiffyMohair
I have a feeling they will probably pill a lot.

View attachment 32940

View attachment 32941
I have listed various sources of super fat ones in this thread, but l haven't tried any yet. Why? I have concerns about stretching and pilling and general quality issues.

Thanks for posting TheTiffyMohair, l don't think I have heard of that one before.

It is summer in Oz, yet l have been rugging up to the hilt. It has even been snowing in summer.
 

The Shooman

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This rare Vicuna vintage Sulka turtleneck from Scotland is being bidded on ebay. These types of things are $$$$. Would have been a good opportunity for me to bid, but not my size.
Vicuna turtleneck - Sulka.jpg

The 1960's Pringle Vicuna is still on ebay too. Asking $5,000 US for it. I have bought from him before, he has good stuff.


My biggest regret was not buying the 2 ply Ballantyne v neck vicuna jumper a few years ago. If a company made that quality today it would be worth well over $10,000. It sold for about $1,200 U.S at the time.
 

Great White Snark

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Sorry to hear your dreams were dashed, his sweaters look to be of really good quality. I can understand how his age might make it difficult to knit larger items now. I am sure there are some knitters out there who would be happy to knit MTM custom cashmere sweaters in a super thick 12 ply. Do you know where you can buy cashmere yarn in such thick ply, I figure it is pretty rare. I know they sell it here - https://www.purlsoho.com/12-ply-cashmere.html

I figure just purchasing the fabric alone would be quite costly. I think a 12 or 16 ply wool cable knit would be more cost effective for me personally. Have any of you purchased some of the super fat hand knit sweaters sold on Etsy or on other sites?

I found these on Etsy for example: From the shop named TheTiffyMohair
I have a feeling they will probably pill a lot.

View attachment 32940

View attachment 32941
Are you fuckin serious with this shit?
Who goes out the house like that?
If that’s what you’re into David Byrne is selling a suit that would go nicely with it.
 

leman

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What a great and informative thread, I joined just because of this too. I have a proclivity for well-made clothes, specially knitwear and am slowly starting to build a collection now. Do any of you gents know where one could procure a heavyweight Alpaca sweater. Preferably 4+ plys
 

Rambo

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What a great and informative thread, I joined just because of this too. I have a proclivity for well-made clothes, specially knitwear and am slowly starting to build a collection now. Do any of you gents know where one could procure a heavyweight Alpaca sweater. Preferably 4+ plys
welcome. out of curiosity, where did you find out about us?
 

leman

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welcome. out of curiosity, where did you find out about us?
Hi,

Thanks for writing. I wish i had a better answer but I searched for 12 ply cashmere and went down the internet rabithole which lead me here amongst other places.
 
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Are you fuckin serious with this shit?
Who goes out the house like that?
If that’s what you’re into David Byrne is selling a suit that would go nicely with it.
I don't personally own any of these exceptionally thick sweaters but I do feel that they fill a need. If you live in a place such as I do where winter weather prevails 6 or more months out of the year with lows of 0 to -10 Celsius being common, you need something decently thick in order to stay warm. They might look outrageous to some but when you are freezing while the other person wearing one is perfectly fine, then it seems worth it. I think a good heavy duty 8 to 12 ply cashmere or high quality wool sweater of a similar ply would do the job just fine and they still look good when worn.
 

The Shooman

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What a great and informative thread, I joined just because of this too. I have a proclivity for well-made clothes, specially knitwear and am slowly starting to build a collection now. Do any of you gents know where one could procure a heavyweight Alpaca sweater. Preferably 4+ plys
L leman that is a hard one. The best you might be able to do is to get a MTM hand knitted ran jumper made from alpaca. Try asking Ann from here if she could have someone knit it using Alpaca.
 

güero

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Sorry to hear your dreams were dashed, his sweaters look to be of really good quality. I can understand how his age might make it difficult to knit larger items now. I am sure there are some knitters out there who would be happy to knit MTM custom cashmere sweaters in a super thick 12 ply. Do you know where you can buy cashmere yarn in such thick ply, I figure it is pretty rare. I know they sell it here - https://www.purlsoho.com/12-ply-cashmere.html

I figure just purchasing the fabric alone would be quite costly. I think a 12 or 16 ply wool cable knit would be more cost effective for me personally. Have any of you purchased some of the super fat hand knit sweaters sold on Etsy or on other sites?

I found these on Etsy for example: From the shop named TheTiffyMohair
I have a feeling they will probably pill a lot.

View attachment 32940

View attachment 32941
If you like those, you'll love this:

001[1].jpg
 

Great White Snark

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598
I don't personally own any of these exceptionally thick sweaters but I do feel that they fill a need. If you live in a place such as I do where winter weather prevails 6 or more months out of the year with lows of 0 to -10 Celsius being common, you need something decently thick in order to stay warm. They might look outrageous to some but when you are freezing while the other person wearing one is perfectly fine, then it seems worth it. I think a good heavy duty 8 to 12 ply cashmere or high quality wool sweater of a similar ply would do the job just fine and they still look good when worn.
No they look absolutely ridiculous.
Where does someone wear something like that? Even in the coldest climates I would expect that if you’re indoors you have heating so they’re not needed indoors.
When you go out it’s likely you’re going to need wind and/or rain or snow protection and anyone who has dealt with frigid temperatures knows the most efficient way to be confortable is to dress in layers. Layers which can be easily removed when you come indoors and don’t necessarily make you look like a complete bloody moron.
 

leman

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L leman that is a hard one. The best you might be able to do is to get a MTM hand knitted ran jumper made from alpaca. Try asking Ann from here if she could have someone knit it using Alpaca.
The Shooman The Shooman thanks. I will contact her. I was keeping an eye on the Sulka, and was surprised it went for sub 1000. Too bad it was not my size. Were it 42" chest, 27" length, I would have had a lot of explaining to do for spending so much on a sweater
 
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No they look absolutely ridiculous.
Where does someone wear something like that? Even in the coldest climates I would expect that if you’re indoors you have heating so they’re not needed indoors.
When you go out it’s likely you’re going to need wind and/or rain or snow protection and anyone who has dealt with frigid temperatures knows the most efficient way to be confortable is to dress in layers. Layers which can be easily removed when you come indoors and don’t necessarily make you look like a complete bloody moron.
A lot of things look ridiculous but people still wear them right, so I think it is a matter of personal preference. I agree that layering is the best option and I even feel that lightweight down jackets can be just as warm if not warmer than most chunky knit sweaters. But I like wearing something that is made from natural fibers. I also like the way they feel when you wear them. I wanted to mention that I have seen women wear super chunky sweaters similar to what I posted, as they tend to pull off the oversized look better than men.

Back to layering when I go skiing I certainly layer up with a t-shirt, merino turtleneck or crewneck, a down jacket if it's cold and then my waterproof outer shell on top. When I walk around town I wear a light to medium weight cashmere sweater with a chunkier cardigan on top and when I am lazy I wear a t-shirt with my down jacket. So yeah it all depends what you like to wear, but I do agree that some of the ones I posted may be a bit overkill for most people. Many Italian and Scottish brands still offer high quality chunky knits that look good (as they don't go overboard) but they tend to cost a lot.
 

Journeyman

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Do any of you gents know where one could procure a heavyweight Alpaca sweater. Preferably 4+ plys.
I'm unsure of the ply count (if that's the correct expression), but last winter I bought a very heft alpaca cable-knit jumper from Brooks Brothers. It's even made in Peru.

It is a beautiful jumper but I only wear it a few times a year as it is so warm and heavy.

Edited to add: Just checked and I made an error - it's 50% merino and 50% alpaca.

Here's a pic of the jumper (not my pic - taken from the web):

 
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leman

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I'm unsure of the ply count (if that's the correct expression), but last winter I bought a very heft alpaca cable-knit jumper from Brooks Brothers. It's even made in Peru.

It is a beautiful jumper but I only wear it a few times a year as it is so warm and heavy.

Edited to add: Just checked and I made an error - it's 50% merino and 50% alpaca.

Here's a pic of the jumper (not my pic - taken from the web):

thanks for the tip. appreciate it
 

The Shooman

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I purchased another monumental jumper today from a special source. Check this out. Just what the doctor order for the coming cold season. Malo is a good brand.

Malo 8 ply cashmere 2 pound thick cableknit
Malo - 8 ply 1.jpg

the real colour
Malo - 8 ply 2.jpg

Malo - 8 ply 3.jpg
 

ballmouse

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I think I made 3 samples with them before they stopped and asked for a deposit for an order. I think most factories are not really interested in making one off samples because they would rather be efficient with production time.

Regarding the designer, I think it's somewhere along the same lines where they like having an expert that writes everything in some standard language to reduce the need for further clarification.

As I'm not making samples anymore, I'll see if I can get some photos of the last sample, even if I think the final product will be a little different.
I caught up with the lady who was helping me with the technical specs on the sweaters; she's considering moving out of the country which would be the end of the sweater project. So I figure I might as post some photos of the last sample before the factory decided it was only going to continue if I placed a production order.

If I recall correctly, I finally got the saddle shoulders and neck length right. Everything else below needs a bit of tweaking.

 

The Shooman

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Purchased a vintage Alan Paine cashmere polo. I only have four cashmere polos so this one is a welcome 5th addiction. Some days a rollneck is too warm, but a polo is perfect.
Alan Paine - made in England cashmere blue polo.jpg
 

Swiss

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Hi
I have just registered and wanted to quickly introduce myself...
I have been checking the knitwear thread for a little while and learned a lot and am very greatful for all the all great posts I've been reading.
I am mostly interested in knitwear and over the past couple of years my interest has gradually moved from Italian brands to vintage scottish knits (with a particular interest in intarsia) although I still purchase a few sweaters from Colombo or Loro Piana once in a while.
I live in Switzerland and travel to Italy relatively often (until recently) so I am usually able to purchase italian knits at a discount.

Finally, my 'secret' dream is to start a sweater business and would really be interested in exchanging ideas about this if anyone is interested
 
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Hi and welcome to the forum. I hope all is well in Switzerland, I saw that there were quite a few cases of the virus. Has Switzerland implemented tough measures against the virus, like its European neighbors? I am glad you have learned a lot from this thread, I myself have learned a lot, especially from Shooman. Feel free to share a couple of your favorite grail pieces with us, Scottish or Italian are both fine. You are lucky that you can travel to Italy and get great deals. Living in the US, I mostly have to find good deals online which can be competitive.

I can relate to you, I would love to start my own knitwear business or at least have my own farm and raise either Cashmere goats, Merino Sheep or Alpacas. Feel free to share ideas in the thread or you can pm me as well, as I'd be happy to throw back different ideas.


Hi
I have just registered and wanted to quickly introduce myself...
I have been checking the knitwear thread for a little while and learned a lot and am very greatful for all the all great posts I've been reading.
I am mostly interested in knitwear and over the past couple of years my interest has gradually moved from Italian brands to vintage scottish knits (with a particular interest in intarsia) although I still purchase a few sweaters from Colombo or Loro Piana once in a while.
I live in Switzerland and travel to Italy relatively often (until recently) so I am usually able to purchase italian knits at a discount.

Finally, my 'secret' dream is to start a sweater business and would really be interested in exchanging ideas about this if anyone is interested
 
Messages
24
I recently was able to purchase the sweater of my dreams, a Heavy Knit 8-12 ply McGeorge vintage cardigan in a nice camel/tan color. The best part is that it is pretty much a perfect fit and that it weighs nearly 3 pounds (2 pounds 14 ounces). I definitely plan to keep this forever, and I'll just need to make sure I stay fit so I can always fit into it. I also recently acquired a Heavyweight Malo as well but the quality isn't quite as good as the McGeorge. But it still has a great cable knit design to it and is worth owning for sure.

mcgeorge_heavy_cashmere_cardigan.jpg
 

The Shooman

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Swiss said:
Finally, my 'secret' dream is to start a sweater business and would really be interested in exchanging ideas about this if anyone is interested
Hello Swiss,

have you ever thought of a specialist knitwear business? There are lots of thin 2 ply knitwear available everywhere, but not enough to keep many people warm in various cooler climates during winter, and many knitwear items can serve as layering items. However there is a casual dress culture now, and l think making multi ply Alpaca and some cashmere could fill a niche'. I don't see many 6 plys around, and everyone doesn't live in ducted heating all the time....people still go out in the cold weather to go about their business.

The issues
People wear coats outside, many buy them for cheap to stay warm.
Multi ply knitwear is very expensive, so why buy it?
However, our homes are too heated, and having the heating on low with a multi ply is ideal, but people are not educated in these ways, nor are they educated about knitwear in general. Why would they spend $500 + on a piece when they can stay in heated buildings and wear cheap coats.


Thick multi plys are the perfect piece of clothing
Knitwear is a fabulous thing. Why? Because there are many times when a multi ply can be put on when the heating doesn't need to be switched on, and for those with wood fires this is especially important. For eg, when l get up early in the morning I will put a thick multi ply on for much of the year and it does the job in keeping warm. I also wear them when in and out of the house when the heating doesn't need to be put on. I also wear them in the evening when a fire doesn't need to be lit. I feel the cold more than most so multi plys are the best thing for me. Multi ply jumpers are my most worn jumpers. There are lots of times when people are not in a suit or sportscoat, so during these times a multi ply can be worn when it is cold. No-one wants to wear a coat in the house, and neither is it ideal to have an overly heated home.

The biggest problem is that people are not educated about knitwear, that is why there is so much flimsy knitwear around. The multi ply has it's place. Specialising in thick knits can serve a niche', but that niche'needs to be developed through education and marketing...it might take time, and there is always risk, but you can make a difference in a major way by filling a gap in the market that few are filling. Always best to start small, and it does take time to change behaviour.

The ultimate niche' would be to sell multi ply alpaca knits made in Scotland. Think 6 - 8 - 12 plys. Not quite as warm as wonderful cashmere, but not as expensive either, nor should it pill as much as modern cashmere.
 
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