There’s silk, and then there’s organic silk

Mountains and cloudsRice fieldsSunlight on the rice terrace

Susurrus silk is environmentally-friendly, of superb quality, and chemical and pesticide free. The silk farm has created stable jobs for the local community and has led to improved and protected natural habitats for wildlife.

Panda Country. Our silk is created in Sichuan Province, in Western China,  an area of  diverse and beautiful natural landscapes from bamboo forests, home to the world’s only wild pandas, watery rice terraces and mountainous Himalayan terrain.

  • Pandas in Sichuan ProvinceAll organic. All aspects of the silk production, from the organic mulberry farm, through the harvesting, preparation, weaving and dyeing of the silk,  to the finished silk articles, have been rigorously inspected and awarded the Global Organic Textile Standard. GOTS Certificate.

Bamboo, Sichuan

 

 

 

 

 

Organic does mean best quality. There is a direct relationship between the quality of the mulberry leaves that silkworms are fed and the quality of the finished silk filament. Our silk is created from the best quality, organic mulberry leaves. This means the cocoons grow big and strong, leading to extra-long silk filaments that can be unreeled in almost endless threads and spun into silk that is even in texture and colour.

Socially responsible. The GOTS certificate is the world’s leading textile processing standard for organic fibres.  It is backed up by independent certification of the entire textile supply chain and includes social criteria as well as ecological criteria. http://www.global-standard.org/the-standard.html

Green rice fields

The company which runs the organic farm, the silk production, the dyeing and the product manufacturing, Alkena,  provides stable employment for local people, from farmers to skilled tailors. They have also planted many trees other than mulberry to create nesting sites for birds and to encourage wildlife diversity. 

Cherry blossom

Human connections. We try to make connections with  the people who are involved in producing our gorgeous fabric and turning our designs into products: sharing photos; asking questions and finding out what we can about each other’s lives.

This organic approach is unusual in China’s silk industry. But at Susurrus we believe it is the only way to make sure luxury products like ours feel great for everyone.

Silk with Soul. That’s the spirit!

Let’s go to the silk shop

Silk with Soul. Pure luxury

At Susurrus we love to take a little bit of luxury wherever we find it… from the warmth of woolly socks straight off the woodburner, to the unhampered view of the Aurora Borealis dancing above us in the evening sky. And, of course, slipping into bed each night with our soft, smooth and soporific organic silk pillowcases. That is most definitely a feeling of luxury.

But what exactly is this elusive concept that changes through time and place and from person to person? What seems like luxury to one can be everyday or even vulgar to another. Our notion of luxury rises and falls with changes in society. It finds roots in culture, economics and symbolism. It follows fashions and tailgates trends. Nowadays, as so many struggle to meet even the basic needs of life, Susurrus asks, why do we love luxury, and how can we justify it?

For many, luxury is synonymous with wellbeing and comfort, with a little bit of guilty pleasure thrown in; that moment when you slow down, breathe deeply, sigh contentedly and feel acutely aware of how good – how luxurious – this feels. It’s the unexpected long-lie when you have small children;  a log fire and a glass of fine red wine on a stormy night,  or the spontaneous picnic by the sea when you should be working. These are luxuries of time and opportunity.

For others, luxury is more about those rare and exclusive experiences  and possessions – the most expensive, most beautiful, biggest, fastest…the glitz and glamour of a 5 star hotel;  the excited buzz of an art opening; the glint of a diamond or the tick of a perfect timepiece.

At Susurrus we too love turning the ordinary into the extraordinary. We too love to feel pampered and special. But not at any cost. Without mindfulness, or compassion and understanding for those whose lives are less easy, our luxury moments are meaningless.

Are our silk pillowcases a luxury product? Of course they are. But they are also carefully sourced from an organic silk maker who cares about the lives of the people who work there and the land they live on. We try to run our business with thought for others. We’re not perfect, and its not much, we know, but it is something. Can we justify our luxury? We can, but only if we keep in mind how fortunate we are and make sure our joy doesn’t come at someone else’s cost.

At Susurrus we will continue to do our bit to support other people where we can, whilst also appreciating those moments in life  – from finding the time to sit and watch the waves on the shore at dawn, to sinking into our soft silk at night. We might even enjoy the odd glass of wine by the fire – toasty in our warm woolly socks, of course.

Silk with Soul. Pure luxury.