25% Possum, 65% Merino, 10% Silk
Count: 90/2 TEX ca 11'400m/kg
This is a firmly twisted yarn, ideal for fine weaving in warp and/or weft for scarves, shawls, clothing material and lots more. Sett depending on weave structure between 20 - 28 epi. Also available in a natural/oatmealy colour as well as black
Price for 250 gr cones $ 40, also available in Natural and Black
Some Information about the Possum
Throughout New Zealand the Brush tail possum (introduced in the 1800’s) has become a destructive pest and not the protected species it is in it’s native Australia. It has no natural enemies here and has multiplied to alarming numbers. The government actively encourages all efforts to rid our forests of this marsupial. Millions of dollars are spent annually on trapping efforts throughout the country. The government applauds any new venture that can contribute to the decrease in the Possum numbers.
I must advise you, that the fur is harvested from a creature that is not alive. If this fact disturbs you then perhaps you should also be aware that these furry destroyers munch their way through an estimated 21’000 tonnes of forest vegetation each and every night of the week. They are picky eaters and will strip a tree of its young tender shoots, leaves and ripest berries in such large numbers that this action defoliates the forest to such an extend that it is unable to recover and the canopy dies. This in turn allows the winds in to further uproot trees. Loss of vegetation then allows erosion and slipping of the soil to occur. If this weren’t bad enough, the possum has extended its diet to include the chicks and eggs of our native birds. It has even been filmed attacking larger adult birds – these had possibly been weakened by starvation.
Now well established in many urban areas too, they have also become a scourge of domestic gardeners up and down the country as they have shown a particular liking for many ornamental and cultivated plants and fruit trees.
What makes Possum such a desirable fur?
Fluffy and lightweight the fur has a fine, soft silky feel. Even the outer fur is so soft that is has an almost nil prickle factor. If you part the fur on a possum pelt, you would notice that it has a crimp, much like that on some sheep fleeces. An individual fibre on the pelt does not easily separate from it’s neighbour.
Exam a fibre under a microscope, and I’m told that each shaft has a series of large scales which help it to grip it’s neighbour. Seen in cross section, the fibre has a hollow core which means that this type of fur has unique thermal properties.
For us, luxuriously soft Possum fur garments (even those with a low fur content) are warmer, easier to dry and much lighter to wear than currently used fibres. It stands to reason therefore, that products using it have the potential to appeal to those in the fashion, sporting and health industries.
The hollow core however also means that the fur does not dye readily. The yarns which are a blend of Possum fur and Merino wool (and some of them with silk as well), have a distinctive dark undertone. This is due to the fact that the Merino yarn (and the silk) readily take on the dye while the Possum remains relatively unaffected.
Possum fur is too short to be used alone and has to be blended with a carrier yarn. Commercially, very fine NZ Merino wool has been chosen as the best “carrier” as it has a long, fine, silky staple which compliments the fur beautifully