Wool is the fundamental material of a classic garment, particularly in men’s clothing. The elegance of the fabric originates in the quality of the raw materials which Vitale Barberis Canonico selects at source.
The finest merino wool comes from the grasslands of Australia and New Zealand, the cashmere comes from China and the mohair from South Africa. Ready to be spun and then woven.
The finest wool from central Australia.
Vitale Barberis Canonico selects only the best Australian merino wool for its collections. Australian merino fibres give a unique performance to the fabric. It is white, soft and valued above all others and, when at its best, can even compare with cashmere.
Merino sheep moved from Asia Minor to Spain and were later introduced into Australia where this hardy, prolific sheep is now considered the most important breed worldwide. Vitale Barberis Canonico is one of the biggest buyers of merino wool and also owns two farms in Australia.
Australian merino fibres give a unique performance a fabric. The fibres range from 14.5 – 19.2 microns and 5 – 8 cms in length, while coarser fibres can be over 30 cms long. Merino wool is extremely fine, white and soft, and has always been in demand for fine cloths and precious yarns. Australian merino fleeces are more elegant than others, although the fibres are more difficult to spin. Australian sheep breeders are considered the best in classing the fleeces, guaranteeing a “clean” fleece without the less valuable parts.
Extrafine, the most highly prized variety of merino wool, is particularly desirable for the production of high superiority, luxury items. The finest merino quality produces wool which can hold its own against cashmere. For us, the end product is always the fabric, so we ensure only the best fibres are chosen.
The ultimate Mohair fibres from South Africa.
Mohair, a fibre with a pearly, almost steely brilliance, is used in large quantities for summer garments, but also in other blends to increase warmth and decrease weight. Vitale Barberis Canonico selects high-quality, South African raw materials.
Mohair was known in biblical times and came to South Africa in the 1800s where rearing and selection of the Angora goat became gradually more intensive. Today it is largely reared on the plains of the Eastern Cape, where Vitale Barberis Canonico selects its raw materials.
Attention must be paid to the lack of coarse hair content, or of dead or medullated fibres, as these cannot be dyed and the result for the end product (particularly visible in dark colours) is different coloured stripes which have a serious effect on the finished piece. For these reasons, we always use pure Cape mohair of finenesses between 23 and 32.5 microns.
Each animal produces 1.6 kg and the average fineness of the adult mohair is 36 microns (24-25 microns in kids) according to the part of the body it comes from. It is blended with wool to increase its warmth and decrease its weight. Mohair is a highly desirable product on international markets, and is used predominantly for summer garments, giving maximum freshness, lustre and non-creasing qualities. But it is above all in the fashion knitwear field that it is lately in demand.
The best Cashmere from Alashan region.
Cashmere is made from the hair of a breed of hardy goats mainly from central Asia. Their hair is smooth, very soft and silky, and cashmere is much sought after by the textile industry. Vitale Barberis Canonico selects only the purest underdown fibres from China for its fabrics.
The goats are hardy and resistant to temperature fluctuations. They are of medium size, weighing between 40 – 60 kg with an open fleece of long, relatively coarse hair, whilst the underdown, extremely highly valued and much sought after by the textile industry, is smooth, very soft and almost silky. The highest quality is generally white, although brown, grey or reddish-brown tendencies also exist.
In the selection of the raw material, Vitale Barberis Canonico looks for the fibres with the lowest coarse hair content and only selects the so-called “white per white” cashmere, which can be used even for lighter colour fabrics.
The cashmere with the best lengths and finenesses can only be found in China, so Vitale Barberis Canonico chooses the best duvet for its collection in the Alashan region, where an average diameter of 15.1 microns (from 11-18 microns) can be achieved to fulfil demands regarding technical requirements, colour and hand.