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What is harris tweed?

HARRIS TWEED, or Clo Mor (The Big Cloth) is the only fabric in the world governed by its own Act of Parliament.

From start to finish the cloth is in the hands of skilled and experienced artisans who oversee every stage of production utilising generations of knowledge to produce a product worthy of the name HARRIS TWEED.

Furthermore a 1993 Act of Parliament underpins the unique status of HARRIS TWEED and decrees that genuine HARRIS TWEED must be made from pure virgin wool which has been dyed and spun on the islands and handwoven at the home of the weaver in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland.

HARRIS TWEED is about quality and style, history and heritage. It is the fabric of choice for many of the world’s leading designers as well as their most discerning clients.

When you buy HARRIS TWEED you are guaranteed the best, safe in the knowledge that the Orb secures a perfect cloth for years of use.

the harris tweed cloth

The rare character and beauty of HARRIS TWEED is attributable to the fact that it is the only fabric produced in commercial quantities by truly traditional methods anywhere in the world. Hundreds of distinctive patterns developed over the centuries, each unique but unmistakably HARRIS TWEED with its characteristic subtle designs in complex natural shades.

Unusually our wool is dyed before being spun, allowing us to blend a multitude of colours into our yarn. With each thread containing a myriad of different colours, a cloth of great depth and complexity is produced. Just look closely to reveal the true nature of your HARRIS TWEED.

There are also an extensive catalogue of designs to delve into from an array of Plain Twills and traditional Herringbones to more complex Plaids and all combinations thereof. HARRIS TWEED is also adventurous enough to be woven into contemporary and unconventional patterns and the HARRIS TWEED Producers continue to explore possibilities with clients with each new season.

Soft, tactile, breathable, warm, colourful, sustainable, adaptable…the old image of coarse, scratchy, dour tweed simply does not exist these days. While still retaining its heritage of practicality and longevity, the HARRIS TWEED of today extols all the qualities and virtues of a truly luxury 21st century fabric.

the certification

The passing of an Act of Parliament in 1993 brought into being the Harris Tweed Authority, a new statutory body replacing the original Harris Tweed Association set up in 1909. The fundamental role of the organisation was to undertake responsibility for promoting and maintaining the authenticity, standard and reputation of the world famous HARRIS TWEED cloth.

The Authority oversees the production and inspection of the cloth from start to finish and only when satisfied that the article is genuinely deserving of our historic Orb will we brand the cloth with the mark.

The mark of the Orb, pressed onto every length of cloth and seen on the traditional label affixed to finished items, guarantees the highest quality tweed, dyed, spun and handwoven by islanders of the Outer Hebrides of Scotland in their homes to the laws outlined in the Harris Tweed Act of Parliament.

The definition of HARRIS TWEED contained in the Harris Tweed Act of 1993 clearly defines HARRIS TWEED as follows:

“Handwoven by the islanders at their homes in the Outer Hebrides, finished in the Outer Hebrides, and made from pure virgin wool dyed and spun in the Outer Hebrides.”

The Act ensures that all cloth certified with the HARRIS TWEED Orb symbol complies with this definition and is genuine HARRIS TWEED, the world’s only commercially produced handwoven tweed.

The legislation and organisation allows the safeguarding of the HARRIS TWEED name, quality and reputation of HARRIS TWEED ensuring that every metre of the world famous cloth conforms to the same exacting standards and gives legal powers to address imitation and counterfeiting of the cloth worldwide.

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