Mohair Velvet is a type of fabric made from Mohair Wool. It is usually used for upholstery. A velvet is a fabric that is made in a certain way usually ending up with a pile; importantly it can be made from many different fibres including mixtures of fibres.
KOTHEA velvets are the best in the market. We only sell top market fabrics, mostly to top European Interior Designers and Architects. Here are some more bits of technical information on our black Italian Silk velvet fabric:
We have recently had to change most of our Velvet production to mills in Europe. Along with some other fabric companies, we have been experiencing quality issues with Chinese produced silk velvet. It’s probably only happening at one or two mills but it has been a big headache for us as we have had to return some significant orders due to less than perfect quality issues. And it’s sometimes hard to get the mills to accept returns that are of OK quality but not excellent.
Anyway, just a heads-up. Check where your silk velvet is being manufactured and double check the quality.
Cashmere Silk Velvet is one of the world’s most luxurious fabrics. But is it THE most luxurious? Now this is a good question! and a little tricky to answer.
Perhaps the most expensive yarn is from the vicuña (vicuna, vicugna), which is a camel-like animal found in the high alpine areas of the South American Andes. Whilst not an endangered species it is a rare animal and difficult to farm as it tends to escape!
Cashmere yarn comes from the cashmere goat and other goats such as the pashmina goat.
Cashmere and Vicuna have an outer layer of hair which is coarse and rough but protective for the animal. This is the guard hair. Underneath the guard hair is a warm layer of much, much softer hair. This underlayer consists of hollow-fibred hair that is an excellent insulator. The vicuna has the finest of these fibres of any (resultant) wool anywhere in the world.
About 400g of yarn can be produced from one Vicuna compared to 150g from the Cashmere goat, the latter being a smaller animal. There are many more Cashmere goats in the world and I suspect this is why Cashmere is relatively affordable – as it is produced in much larger volumes in a more competitive market.
As an indication, a Vicuna scarf would cost in excess of US$1000. As far as I know, it is not produced in sufficient quantities to be available in a suitable form for interiors use (I could be wrong). But if it were it could be woven with silk to produce THE MOST EXPENSIVE AND BEST woollen silk velvet in the world. A further problem is that the Vicuna fibre can readily be damaged when dyed, again making significant production quantities problematic.
Now, as much of the Cashmere yarn produced comes from China, Australia and other countries…in fact just about anywhere other than Kasmir! it strikes me that is an opportunity waiting to happen for some illustrious, economically-minded, goat breeder out there with friends in the textiles industry. If the production problems could be overcome I could see that there still would be a market for an interiors fabric retailing at in excess of GBP800/m (US£1300/yard) – albeit a small one.
Mohair Velvet and Silk Velvet buyers consider this: You have just invested a considerable amount of money in a high quality silk velvet or mohair velvet. Are you really considering upholstering with it yourself. Use an experienced upholsterer who, to be brutally honest, should not need the instructions that follow.
Some velvets are woven with a nap others are not. It is not a problem either way. If there is a nap you need to know which way it goes as that affects the process of upholstering. When you run your hand down the mohair velvet or silk velvet the smoothed direction indicates the direction of the nap. Remember this, it is important.
I’m assuming that you have already checked that the fabric is not damaged and that each piece is from the same dye lot.
The nap should be upholstered downwards for:
– the back;
– the seat; and
– side surfaces.
The nap should be upholstered from the outside inwards for:
– arm rests.
How do you flip your cushions? Top to bottom or left to right?
Most people flip from top to bottom. It is therefore standard upholstering practice to upholster the front and the back the opposite way. IE when they are flipped over the nap is the same.
You should use a layer of wadding between the foam and the fabric. The wadding can be either cotton or synthetic it does not really matter but check with any fire rating requirements. Again check that you are using the right kind of foam but HR foam or cold foam are both fine.
However if the pile is vertical then we advise the additional use of a cotton slip-cover.
Going back to the foam for a minute we advise that you use white wadding. In certain circumstances it is possible that grey wadding will ‘bleed’ causing marks on your beautiful Mohair Velvet. For example this may be caused from moisture used in the cleaning process.
Always use wadding on the arm rests as a protective layer to help eliminate ‘sharp’ edges. Using wadding on arm rests will thus reduce wear and tear considerably.
For the piping never use synthetic piping cord, always use cotton piping cord. As with the arm rests this will reduce wear and tear by eliminating the ‘sharper edges’.
Again to reduce wear and tear also use the length of the fabric to make the piping. this will look better as well.
Velvets have become increasingly popular over the last 5 years. Both residential and contract usage of velvets have increased tremendously. Having been produced for hundreds of years velvets never seem to have lost the attention of discerning designers.
Interior Designers are often interested in the properties and manufacture of velvet – the two being necessarily related. The depth of the pile, the durability of the finish, the ease of maintaining the beautiful finish.
Velvet Fabrics by KOTHEA include Mohair Velvet, Cotton Velvet, Linen Velvet & silk velvet. The most popular being mohair velvet the most luxurious being Cashmere Silk Velvet.
KOTHEA was asked “what is the difference between cotton velvet and mohair velvet upholstery fabric”.
More of an explanation about velvet is given here – essentially ‘velvet’ is the finish arrived at by a specific production process. That process can be applied to many fibres. Mohair usually refers to a silk-like fabric or yarn made from the hair of the Angora goat and cotton is a natural fibre that grows from the cotton plant.
This blog contains lots of posts on velvets both from: an explanatory point of view; a marketing/sales point of view; and a usage point of view – hopefully something for everyone. You can use the search tools to the right to find out more. Please feel free to ask questions.
We have been absolutely hectic at KOTHEA this year. Some new velvets are coming on board as I write and we have been concentrating a lot more as well on European business this year.
There are a few new marketing activities we have planned which should hopefully add a little value to the interior design community rather than just trying to sell stuff to them, so watch this space and your in-box for more information on that.
We have tried to offer as full a range of velvets as possible: cotton velvets; linen velvets; cashmere silk velvets; silk velvets; mohair velvets and so on. We are thought about offering a budget range as well but decided in the end not to tarnish our strong quality brand. I think we made the right choice.
Well, despite the market slowdown the luxury 50 storey Pan Peninsula tower in London Docklands is fully sold. Alongside amazing apartments are a signature restaurant, private cinema and a Six Senses Spa.
The penthouses have amazing views and KOTHEA have supplied some of our very best mohair velvets for this development.