Why buy Swans Island?
It is superior craft, pure materials, and simple, timeless beauty that Swans Island weavers put into our products. In an age of endless consumer choices, our weavers and finishers pour their skill, effort, and time into making one thing that stands out as special. Among the countless possessions that pass through our lives, a Swans Island Blanket will be a treasure to pass on to future generations. While the core collection is hand-woven throws, and summer and winter blankets, we now also produce baby blankets, pillows, wraps, and scarves. Our company continues to innovate without losing the connection to our roots and to the design traditions embodied in our hand-woven products. Additionally, we now offer 4 collections of hand-dyed knitting yarns. Our Natural Colors Collection includes 100% merino knitting yarn, as well as a 50% wool/ 50% silk blend lace-weight & sport weight yarns all dyed by hand with natural colors in our dye house. Our Eco-Wash washable wool collection in DK, Sport & Aran weight, and our newest All American Collection. A 75% Rambouillet/25% Alpaca blend. Both dyed with low impact acid dyes in our dye house.
How do I care for my Swans Island items?
There are three ways to clean any Swans Island woven product:
At Home: Use an organic soap suitable for wool. In a top-loading washer, soak and spin, but do not agitate, your item. Dry flat; block out to maintain shape. Do not hang over a line to dry. Do not place in a dryer.
Swans Island: Items may be sent to us for laundering. We use organic soap, block, air dry, press and return to you. Please call for pricing.
Professional Cleaner: Use a reputable dry cleaner. The industry claims that their chemicals do not harm woolen products.
Wool is extremely durable. Properly cared for, it will last many generations. If your Swans Island product does need repair we operate a blanket hospital and can seamlessly fix what ails it.
Which stores carry Swans Island products?
Please check our website for a current list of retailers who carry our blankets or yarn.
How do I return or exchange something?
Swans Island wants all of our customers to be satisfied with our products. All unused items may be returned for an exchange within six months of purchase. Items returned for refund must have prior verbal approval. Monogrammed items and custom orders are not returnable. Please contact us at 1 888 526 9526 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If I have other questions, whom can I contact?
I would like to sell Swans Island products; how do I arrange that?
For yarn sales, please contact Claudia Wilcox.
For wovens and accessories, please contact Jill Finberg.
If you are an interior designer, please contact Annie Chapman.
What forms of payment do you accept?
We currently accept Mastercard, Visa, Discover, and American Express credit cards for all online and phone orders.
Can I make changes to my order after it is placed?
Yes, as long as you have not ordered a custom color or size and we have not yet begun to weave it.
What do “warp” and “weft “ mean?
The warp threads are the vertical lines of a woven product. The weft threads are the horizontal lines. Swans Island weaves what is known as a “weft faced” weave. Over 70% of what you see on the front of our products is the weft.
Where does your wool come from?
Our Corriedale and Winter wool come from U.S. suppliers with whom we have long standing relationships. It is organically spun for us in Vermont. Our Merino yarn originates in South America. It is spun for us in Maine. Our Merino wool, from sheep to yarn, is certified organic.
How do I get my patterns?
All of our patterns may be ordered on www.ravelry.com, and are delivered as PDF downloads. You will not receive a hard copy of a purchased pattern by mail; your PDF will be delivered digitally.
Do you sell printed versions of your patterns?
We wholesale original patterns in printed form to yarn shops.
How do you get such rich hues?
We dye all our yarns in our own dye house, which is located in a 1790’s farmhouse here on the coast of Maine. The subtle variegations of tone are achieved by using time-honored traditions of natural dying. Small batches of skeins are dipped by hand into vats, with each distinctive lot being carefully crafted by our dyer. Since each batch is unique, the colors will vary slightly from lot to lot. We take what nature provides us. That’s what makes our yarns different from other commercially produced yarns. That’s what we love about them!
What is the difference between synthetic dyes and natural dyes?
Synthetic dyes are derived from petroleum. Natural dyes are produced from living things with little or no processing. They produce a wide range within each dyed color, much like the harmonious colors in the natural world. Our hues are achieved by using only 100% natural dyestuffs. Since all colors found in nature work beautifully together, you can’t go wrong with any of our colors. Each one is subtle, sophisticated and has a richness not found in other solid, chemically dyed yarns.
Your merino wool is incredibly soft – why is that?
Our organic fiber is spun in a certified organic mill. That means fewer harsh chemicals are used in processing, thus helping our yarn retain more natural lanolin than many other commercially produced yarns. Our extra fine merino is soft enough to wear next to your skin (19.5 micron count). After knitting and blocking, your finished projects will bloom to have a beautiful soft luster and a wonderful feel.
What are Swans Island’s environmental standards?
Swans Island is committed to using the highest quality materials. For us, this means employing the most natural ingredients available. Our fleeces come either from the flocks of farmers whom we know, or from sheep that carry an organic certification. They are all spun in New England mills that are themselves certified organic spinning mills. Our colors either come off the back of the sheep, or is made by us using natural plant dyes.
Why aren’t all of your products listed as organic?
Many local farms operate at slim profit margins and cannot afford the organic certification. We purchase our non-certified fleeces from farms that employ healthy pasture and stock practices. The most important step in producing the best yarn is processing it from fleece to yarn. We only use certified organic mills for spinning our yarns.