What’s the collective noun for kikois? A klutch, kaleidoscope, a klomp, kollection?
For years we’ve been weaving our own homage to the classic East African Kikoi at our Mill in Plettenberg Bay on our seventy-year-old Ruti looms. Prized for their versatility, our bright and colourful wraps have always been in high demand. So much so that our two Ruti’s can no longer keep up. So to facilitate more colours and greater volume we’ve moved the production of our striped Kikoi range to our Dornier machines. Welcome the South Kikoi.
We took this as a good opportunity to refine our range and get some new colours on the go.
How does this work? We follow these steps:
- The design team takes a look at how to weave multiple colourways on a common warp so that each colourway in the range looks different and forms part of a streamlined production.
- Samples are warped, woven and rigorously tested. This ensures we create a quality end product that satisfies our high standards.
- The warps are created at our workshop in the Crags and then transported (at ‘warp’ speed) to the Mungo Mill.
- The warp is drawn-in to the loom at the mill. Each thread must be passed through a heddle and the reed individually and each warp is made up of several hundred threads so this takes some time!
- The fabric is woven.
- Then cut, and hemmed in our CMT department.
- The 11 new colours are given names. Everyone helps contributes and has an opinion.
- Colour samples are packed and sent to our marketing team in Cape Town. Everyone oohs and aahs at the beauty of what has just arrived on the desk.
- A shoot is conceptualized. Maike wanted to evoke feelings of a Southern summer, travel, heat, colourful coastal cities, warm sand and seeking refuge under the shade. Success?
- A model is found (here, the lovely Yonela, who you’ll probably know if you’ve been into our Cape Town store).
- Our shops in CT, JHB & Plett are stocked.
- Craig puts the new product onto our online store.
- A press release goes out. If you work for the press and want to hear from us please get in touch.
- A blog post is written. Like this one.
- A newsletter is sent out. You can sign up for our newsletter here.
Sounds simple right? It’s not. But if it were so simple it wouldn’t be as rewarding when it all comes together.