Thin air, tattered prayer flags, lonesome wind. Snow leopards, tea houses with yak butter. Temples at 17,000 feet. When I think of the Annapurna mountains of Nepal, I think first of trekkers hoisting backpacks, swinging bridges, random avalanches, cold spectacular. I think maybe I'd like to be one of those trekkers one day.
But, for now, I am learning that in the same region are goatherds keeping watch over their herds, and spinning, by hand, the raw undercoat of their goats into a cashmere yarn that melts upon your skin, and weaving those fibers on traditional looms into the softest shawl I have ever come to know. A shawl that take two months to make. I, who have too many shawls, find this shawl, from the Goddess of the Harvests (as Annapurna translates), impossible to resist.
Noble Fibre is an endeavor to put the noble back in the fibers of this mountain goddess. Bringing work to 180 artisans in Nepal, the potential of cashmere here is fully realized. In simplicity and grace, luscious reaches its most luxurious. A subtle tonal patch on the back is a detail I love, adding understated character.
Noble is a word we don't use much anymore. It seems positively old-fashioned given our current fascination with the ignoble, the base, the trivial, the whole dark underbelly of things. But here in the plateaus and peaks of Nepal, there are noble artisans striving to create with the most noble of fibers, something that will rise above the test of time, that will rise to heights of perfection, that will allow the makers to rise also, strong as the mountain upon which they feed.
I love this word. Noble. (Honest. Magnanimous. Generous. Brave.) The way I want to feel, wearing an honest wrap around me, with a patch and a prayer, and a whole plateau of women with me, rising into their own, like goddesses.
All the Best,
Susan Hull Walker