Dornier, the German aircraft manufacturers, branched out into textile machinery after the Second World War because the allied forces banned the company from making planes for a number of years. Their looms have since come to be considered by many as the Rolls Royces of weaving machinery.
At the Mungo Mill, we now have 7 working Dornier Looms which were all made in the 1970s. The older models, although slower, are more versatile and better suited to our variety of complex weaves. The Wide Width Dornier, which arrived from the UK last year, is the latest addition. We have worked out that this loom has woven two and a half million meters of fabric before coming to Mungo!
Master Weaver, and Mungo founder, Stuart Holding had been on the lookout for a Wide Width Dornier for many years because of their ability to weave at a width of 340 cm as opposed to the standard 180 cm. Finally, a contact in Lancashire told him about a 36-year-old Wide Width looking for a new home. Stu flew there immediately to see it because he knew how difficult it is to get your hands on one of these beauties (most are sent off to finish their days India and China). There was no question about it, this one was going to be sent to Africa. Six weeks in transit across the Atlantic, and finally, the loom arrived in South Africa, her final resting place, on a farm mill in Plettenberg Bay. The view has never been better.
There has, however, been very little resting since her arrival. After a bit of restoration and a fresh coat of paint. Our Dornier Wide Width loom has been hard at work. The beautiful full sized Quill Blanket and the Textural Bedcovers are just the beginning of so many wonderful woven possibilities from this loom.
“this loom has woven two and a half million meters of fabric before coming to Mungo!”