A story of colours, of yarns, of designers travelling the world but also of friendships, of passion for knitting and of great skill.
A story of an ethical project and of two friends Paola and Andrea who met in Tibet.
The journey begins on the Tibetan plateau with its nomadic peoples. Here, yaks and cashmere goats are reared in a semi-wild state according to a thousand-year-old tradition and in harmony with the delicate ecosystem of the high-altitude grasslands.
Beyond 4,000 metres, a cooperative is created that supplies the raw material and ensures that this community can continue to live and work on their legendary land. This is where Myak's certified, traceable and sustainable supply chain starts.
The raw material is the soft undercoat of yak cubs and Tibetan cashmere goats.
It all starts with the combing of a yak cub
After the long Tibetan winter, the yak cubs and cashmere goats begin to shed the precious undercoat that protected them from the extreme temperatures.
This is also the moment when Myak makes his promise to buy them at an above-market price.
Yak cubs are not sheared; their down is combed out after the first winter, just before they shed spontaneously on the grasslands in early spring. An entirely natural change of hair: this is why Myak yarn can be considered a vegan fibre.
The down is sorted and cleaned manually and separated from the waste. Only 30% of what is collected is used to produce the yarn. The discarded 70% is used by the Tibetans to make their tents and for mattresses that are donated to monasteries. The valuable Tibetan down arrives in Italy . Here the yarn is spun by carded spinning. The small spinning workshops in the Biella region are the architects of this transformation.
The yarn is used by famous designers from all over the world who meet at various retreats to share their knowledge and teach the art of knitting.
From 11 to 15 June 2023 we also hosted a special retreat. Special three times:
1. Cavalese and Val di Fiemme are the home of Paola and her childhood, even though she lives in New York
2. My friendship (Manuela, former owner of the Azalea, the family hotel) with Paola dates back to the tender age of our 5 years. So we have been friends for a lifetime ...
3. The Azalea - Argentina axis does not end here, so we are proud to have hosted Argentine designer Joji Locatelli.
Knitters from the USA, Canada, Germany and Brazil enjoyed the Fiemme Valley and its fantastic landscape. They went for walks, even barefoot, and climbed the Corno Bianco. There was no lack of yoga in the morning. They made natural soap and collected wild herbs with star chef Alessandro Gilmozzi. A lunch in the meadows with the grass still tall will remain a beautiful memory. Apertivo and coffee breaks on the terrace cheered up the Azalea.
The knitting workshop with Joji Locatelli was magnificent ... like a poem!
We will miss these colourful 'knitters', always creative, always smiling with these incredible wools ...
Thank you to Paola, Andrea and Carlotta