Craft Stars: The Makers of Harris Tweed

nike-air-royal-harris-tweed-sneakers-1.jpgAbove: accept no imitations! These Nike Air Royal kicks are made with genuine Harris Tweed, helping to keep a centuries-old tradition alive.

Harris Tweed's in the news again, because a certain international retailer's been claiming that their threads are the real deal when, well, they're not.

But that makes us Crafty Crafters wonder - what exactly IS Harris Tweed?

True Harris Tweed is a stout woolen fabric woven in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland, one of the most remote parts of the United Kingdom. Originally handmade, it's now machine-woven, but its quality is still top notch.

zaraorderdto-222.jpgLeft: vintage lovers and high fashion divas alike know that this is the trademark of real Harris Tweed.

Want to make sure you're buying the real thing? The distinctive orb of the Harris Tweed trademark makes this fabric easily recognizable when it's been cut into garments.

This woolen fabric's having a bit of a moment, as it's been used both to jazz up Nike kicks and clothe the Eleventh Doctor. But accept no imitations - the real thing will keep you warm and last for decades.

This video, created by Craft Star Mr. X Stitch, is a meditative portrait of the people and materials that make Harris Tweed. It's a proud British tradition that I think most crafters would be keen to learn more about.

Are you up for working some genuine Harris Tweed magic into your craftiness? Visit the website of the Harris Tweed Authority, which offers a comprehensive history of the fabric and - perhaps best of all! - some excellent travel tips, in case you want to take your crafty curiosity straight to the source.

Got any stories about crafting with genuine Harris Tweed? Please share 'em in the comments!

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