All of the exquisite silk fabrics and scarves that Talis offers are woven by thirty families living in Kampot province, on island villages two hours from Phnom Penh. Our trading partners have been revitalizing the silk industry and, thanks to the fair wage, drawing younger people towards their cultural traditions.
A lot of time, effort and traditional production techniques are incorporated into weaving a single silk scarf. The silk managers in Kampot province first buy the un-dyed silk thread in bulk from Vietnam, but thanks to revitalizing the weaving industry, the weavers now plant mulberry bushes in their villages, with the goal of harvesting the silk solely in Cambodia. With generations of experience first with using vegetable dyes, they now dye the threads using azo-free, low-impact dyes. In large pots of boiling dye, the silk threads sit for about one hour. Then they hang above the pot to dry. After the thread is dry, it will be immersed in a solution to soften the threads. Then the thread will be spun onto spools for use on the shuttles to make the scarves. As well, the threads need to be set up on the loom to create the desired pattern. This entire process takes 10 days from dyeing to loom set-up. Weaving takes only a short time in comparison. A good weaver can make 4-5 scarves a day.