Cool Facts About Silk

1 CommentFriday, 5 May 2017  |  Admin

Cool Facts About Silk – Luscious, Luxurious and a Joy to Wear

 

We adore the slithery, super-soft feel of real silk. It hangs perfectly, falls beautifully and looks absolutely wonderful. Not too many decades ago real silk was the ultimate in luxury, only affordable by the wealthy. It became a high street staple for the first time during the early 1990s, when real silk shift dresses hit the high street at stores like Next and genuine silk skirts, beautifully embroidered, were all the rage at Monsoon.

These days silk remains an everyday fabric, something we can all enjoy wearing. But it is still magical stuff, a fabric that is made by unwinding the cocoons of exotic silk moths. Here are some fantastic facts about silk.

43 fabulous facts about silk

  1. China has been the source of top quality silk for more than five thousand years
  2. Silk's discovery is attributed to Xiling, the wife of the Emperor Huang-Di. Apparently she was enjoying a cuppa in the imperial gardens when a cocoon fell into her cup and unravelled. She noticed it was made from a long thread, and the thread was both very strong and very soft. The rest is history
  3. Silk was often used as currency in ancient China
  4. In China poor people were not allowed to wear silk until the Qing dynasty came along in 1644
  5. The emperors of China wanted to keep the silk making process secret. Anyone caught spreading the news or trying to take the worms out of China was executed
  6. The Chinese kept silk a secret for more than a thousand years
  7. Sericulture is the practice of breeding silkworms to make raw silk
  8. The silk worm is actually the caterpillar stage of the silk moth, which only eats leaves from the mulberry tree
  9.  Once they're ready to harvest the cocoons are sorted by colour, size, shape and texture. Then they're boiled in water for 5 minutes, gently turned for the whole time 
  10. A special needle is used to pick up the ends of the silk strands, then the raw fibre is carefully wound around a pencil, a process called reeling . Once it's reeled, the silk is woven together into a thread anywhere between 3 and 10 strands wide
  11. The USA imports more silk than any other country
  12. Up until the 1200s silk was a costly oriental import that only the super-rich could afford
  13. Weirdly, the silk moth larva has been used by humans to make silk for so long that you no longer find them in the wild – they are exclusively bred for silk production, although they have wild relatives out there, namely Bombyx Mandarina
  14. Silk is delicate. You should never spray perfume or deodorant on it, and never bleach it
  15. Silk can fade when exposed to direct sunlight for long periods
  16. It's not a good idea to iron silk on the steam setting, and you should always iron it from the back
  17. Always keep your iron cool - silk is an organic protein like human hair and can burn 
  18. Never wring silk dry – it'll end up out of shape
  19. Female silk worms lay about 400 eggs at a time, after which female and male both die
  20. Adult silk moths don't eat... at all
  21. Silk's amazing absorbency makes it comfortable to wear in warm weather. Low conductivity keeps warm air close to the skin during cold weather
  22. Silk is also used for upholstery, wall coverings, rugs, bedding and a wide variety of interesting industrial and commercial uses including bicycle tyres
  23. A silk rope is stronger than the same size of rope made from metal 
  24. When southern Italy was ruled by the Normans, the country became a vital centre for breeding silkworms and spinning silk thread
  25. The price of raw silk is around twenty times the price of its cotton alternative
  26. 125,000 metric tons of silk are made worldwide every year
  27. Just one hectare of mulberry trees contains around ten tons of leaves, which are enough to generate 450Lbs of silkworm cocoons and 85Lbs of raw silk
  28. The silk is harvested by unwrapping it from the cocoon in one enormously long strand, often as long as two thirds of a mile
  29. It takes 2000-3000 cocoons to make one pound of silk
  30. One pound of silk fabric contains about 1000 miles of silk thread 
  31. Half a kilogram of silk worms eat as many as 12,000 kilograms of mulberry leaves during its life
  32. It takes more than 200 silk worm cocoons to make one traditional kimono and 70kg of mulberry leaves to generate enough fabric to make a silk dress
  33. The world's total silk production generates 70 billion miles of silk thread, which equals around 300 trips to the sun and back
  34. Why does silk shimmer? It's the structure of the fibre, a triangular prism shape that refracts light at different angles
  35. Silk fibres measure just 1/2500th of an inch across 
  36. Silk has the same tensile strength as steel. It used to be the strongest natural fibre  we'd ever discovered until scientists analysed spider silk, which is a whole lot stronger
  37. China makes about 80% of the world’s silk, India generates more than 10%. Japan, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam and Uzbekistan also make raw silk, and Brazil is the only non-Asian country that makes large amounts of the fabric 
  38. Just one silk worm can produce as much as 15m of fibre every minute
  39. A silk worm grows to 25 times its original size during its first four weeks of life
  40. Filament silk is made from unbroken silk fibre measuring 1000m or more. It's the finest and most shiny silk of the lot, a serious luxury
  41. Coarse silk is made from scraps left behind by the production process and always contains bits of the cocoon itself. Many people consider it an inferior fabric but it's still very beautiful
  42. Floret silk is made from medium length fibres around 15cm long, much more matte than filament silk
  43. Silk from the Japanese or 'Tensan' moth is coarser and more yellowy, thicker and less shiny

Check out our stunning silk dresses and skirts

Our customers love silk a much as we do, and we've sourced some totally stunning silk skirts and genuine silk fairy dresses for you. Take a look here and here,and see what you think. Are you inspired to treat yourself to some glorious silk clothing this summer?

Latest Products
NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

NEW
New silk long fairy dress

New silk long fairy dress£32.00

Long double layer fairy dress from new silk

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