Sustainability and manufacturing
Svenskt Tenn’s rugs are manufactured primarily by three suppliers in Sweden. The wool in the rugs comes from New Zealand, which is known for having the best animal husbandry in the world, and the warp is either of flax cultivated in France or of polyester made in Germany. The yarn is dyed in Sweden and in Italy, with colours that are approved in accordance with the EU’s REACH Regulation. It has been adopted to protect people and the environment from harmful chemicals.
There is something balletic about the production in Sweden’s oldest rug factory. Kasthall has woven and tufted rugs since 1889, and Fredrik, who shoots in the wool in the fabric with a tuft pistol, contribute to this impression. Both his and the other tufters’ lifts move rhythmically as the work progresses upwards on the large, stretched fabrics.
When the tufting is completed the rugs’ stitches are sealed with water-based glue which also helps to retain the carpet’s shape. To the wet glue an additional protective fabric is applied which makes the carpet more stable.
Fifteen hours later the carpet is dry and cut from its loom. An edge of the tuft weave is folded by hand on the back of the carpet in order to give it a stable finish. A plane is run along the carpet pile, in order to ensure that the surface is as smooth as possible. The craftsman also smooths the edges of the carpet with scissors before vacuuming it. Lastly, the carpet is marked with a leather label signed by the weaver or the tufter.
Today, more than 100 people work in the brick buildings a few miles southwest of Borås. The room filled with wool samples from floor to ceiling bears witness to the organisation and the quantity of carpets that have been produced over the years. In the late 19th century, the yarn was spun in the factory, which had its own yarn dyeing works. Today, yarns of wool and flax are purchased, and the manufacturing methods have also changed over the years. Nevertheless, it is still handwork.
“Kasthall’s carpets are the carpet industry’s equivalent to art glass,” explains Lena Jiseborn, Range Director. “Product developers and designers work side by side and the personal contact in each step plays an important role for the final outcome.”
Sustainability in focus
Read more about Svenskt Tenn's Sustainability Philosophy below.