Creative Process ~ Cortes Sweater
The Cortes Intarsia Merino Wool Sweater is our second knitted interpretation of the Pacific Northwest. It's made with 100% GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), mulesing-free wool and knit via the intarsia method by artisans in Tuscany, Italy.
Cortes is named after Cortes Island, the free-spirited Canadian Gulf Island of the Pacific Northwest. The sweater's hand-embroidered waves resemble the many waved lines that are found in the Pacific Northwest's environment. These lines are evident in the curved branches of the arbutus tree, the hypnotic silhouette of mountains layered in the distance on a misty day, or the coastal islands' curvy forms that are visible from higher ground.
The Cortes' embroidered waves elegantly wrap around the sweater, offering a different perspective from all angles.
Waved lines in the Pacific Northwest's Gulf Islands.
The Cortes Sweater is our gold standard of sustainability. Our merino wool yarn is sourced from Italy and carries GOTS and mulesing-free credentials. Our supplier is also in the process of receiving RWS (Responsible Wool Standard) certification, and is aligned to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.
To help our make our design come to life, we enlisted Italian artisan knitting studio Manusa. Manusa is a social enterprise that values artisan craft, sustainable design, and ethical manufacturing. They hire and train socially fragile people to encourage rediscovery of personal creative skills while preserving local artisan craft in their area of Italy.
Hand-embroidery underway in Manusa's Tuscany, Italy studio.
The intarsia method used for Cortes was a traditional artisan style of knitting, where different patterns seem to be 'inlaid' into a garment, rather than embroidered on top. Using a manual 3 gauge knitting machine, Cortes was meticulously knitted then finished via a hand embroidery of its waved motifs.
You can purchase our artisan-made Cortes Intarsia Merino Wool Sweater here.