Lebarca wool comes to the factory directly from the mountain shepherds. It is cleaned and mixed for color, then made into yarn. The yarn is put on the looms, which have some electric assist, but every stage of the weaving process is hands-on controlled by skilled weavers. After weaving, the blankets are processed by being put into mountain river-powered washing machines. This processing pre-shrinks the blankets as well as making them stronger and softer. This ancient method of puffing up the blankets is only one of the special ways Lebarca blankets are entirely earth-friendly and organic.
The sheep which produce wool for LEBARCA blankets are unique. They are small indigenous breeds from the Rhodope and Pirin mountains of Eastern Europe. These sheep produce long and heavy fiber wool which makes a very soft and strong product with more texture and interest than the common merino wool. There are more than 20 distinct breeds of sheep in this area with almost as many colors. Colors range from pure white to copper-red, warm browns, grays, and black. Unfortunately many of these breeds are endangered and efforts to protect them are not very successful at this time. We hope that by providing a market for wool from these sheep it will make some small difference in these efforts.
Unlike many wool blankets, LEBARCA blankets are machine washable, hang dry. They are some of the heaviest wool blankets on the market today, most weighing between 6 and 6.5 lbs, the floral designs being the heaviest. Imported.