Monday, June 18, 2007

So what IS Mohair anyway?

I very often get this age old question from people who are not familiar with Mohair. Especially when somebody asks me what I do for a living. And I reply, "I make MOHAIR teddy bears". Then they have this odd look in their face and immediately inquire... "What is Mohair?"...... well here is the answer.


Mohair (from "muhayar" which is Arabian for "the fabric of goat hair") is the hair that is sheared (usually twice a year) from an Angora goat. The best fibers from Angora goats, which are very sensitive to temperature, are only available in 3 places in the world that have the consistent mild climate they need: Texas, USA, South Africa and Turkey. The fur from the Angora goat is white, curly, has a wonderful silky feel, a natural sheen and is remarkably strong. One angora goat can produce 11 to 17 pounds of mohair in one year. Mohair takes and holds dye well. This combination of characteristics makes mohair one of the finest fibers that nature has to offer. The natural durability of real fur without harm to the animal or the environment. Typically mohair is the chosen fabric for the teddy bear maker. Oh, and it is also very expensive to buy.... it runs about $80-$125 for just 1 yard of fabric....ouch!

So there you have it in a nutshell..... a bit of trivia for your brain today.

Have a great day!

7 comments:

Suzanne said...

Thanks Wendy...I've always wondered, but never asked! Is it strong enough to be it's own fabric or does it come to you loose like you would use for needle felting?

Pfatt Group said...

Baaah Baaah!!!

Mica

http://garboodles.typepad.com/

Wendy said...

It comes just like fabric. It has a woven backing that holds the fibers...

Nanny's Cottage said...

Oh my GOSH! I just found your site and am just smitten with your bears! They are truly works of love! What a talent you have to be able to capture their gentle characters!
~Nena

Sylvia Anderson said...

Thank you for the education on mohair Wendy! I collect old troll dolls from the 1960's and the best ones had real mohair for their hair. To this day, it is still so soft and silky, and looks wonderful! I can understand why bear makers want to use it....and wow....is it expensive!! Now I know why!

Lorraine said...

Thank you for the lesson, Wendy!! I did not know that:o)!!!

FrenchGardenHouse said...

Thanks, Wendy, like Suzanne, I never knew exactly where it came from! NOw when I look at my antique little guys, I KNOW!
Lidy