Golden Spider Silk Cloth an amazing story

tms: Will this is interesting use of small creature to fabricate garments – then again some cultures have been using silkworms for centuries.

Incredible story

Although spider silk is thought to be the finest type of silk, history tells us that there have been very few experiments and previous attempts to weave spider silk, mainly due to the difficulty in its process. The Frenchman Francois-Xavier Bon de Saint Hilaire was the first to get his hands on spider silk by illustrating how fabric could be spun from it in 1709 producing a line of clothes for the King Louis XVI. In fact, the last garment made of spider silk was created in the 19th century for the Paris Exposition Universelle, yet with no samples remaining.

Wanting to revive history, exploit this precious source and create a unique conception, Peers and Godley started experimenting with spider silk in 2004. The choice of a cape was made upon the need to create a piece that would be versatile but simultaneously inspirational. And so, it took millions of female spiders, thousands of working hours and a team of 80 specially trained handlers to make the largest garment of spider silk in the world.

In order to create the textiles, the spiders were collected each morning in the wilds of Madagascar, held for 20 minutes whilst they produced between 30-50 meters of thread and then were released back in the wild – unlike the mulberry silk from silkworms in which the pupa is killed in its cocoon. Skilled handlers then took the silk to the workshop and put it in weaving cones. With regards to the cape, the main weave is made up of 96 strands, the lining 48 strands and its appliqué embroidery is made using unspun 24 strand silk. It is worth noting that on average of 23,000 spiders produce approximately 1 ounce of silk, only further emphasizing  the rarity and uniqueness of these creations.

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About thematerialsleuth

I work in the digital industry and this blog is an outlet for things that I admire whether its design, interior, graphic, fashion, styling, industrial, architecture, art, illustration, music or other bloggers etc. I constantly search for different artists who do not grab the media attention or have high profiles brand ambassadors pushing their products.

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