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About Silk

About Silk

Silk has been known as the ‘Queen of Textiles’ for over 4,000 years. To quote Oscar de la Renta, "Silk does for the body what diamonds do for the hand."

Mulberry Silk

Mulberry silk is the highest quality silk available. It comes from silkworms produced from the Bombyx mori moth. The silkworms are fed an exclusive diet of mulberry leaves. Jasmine Silk duvets, pillows and toppers are made by 100% grade A long-strand mulberry silk. Because of the rising price of mulberry silk, there are many suppliers selling cheaper silk duvets which are filled with a mix of polyester and silk, or chopped strand silk which is essentially off cuts of silk that can’t be used for anything else. Our silk duvets come with a small inspection zip where you can inspect the quality of the silk inside the duvet.

Momme weights

Mommes (mm) are units of weight traditionally used to measure the density of silk. It is similar to the use of thread count for cotton fabric. The usual range of momme weight for different weaves of silk are:

  • Gauze – 3 to 5 momme weight
  • Chiffon - 6 to 8 momme weight
  • Habutai - 5 to 16 momme weight
  • Charmeuse – 16 to 19 momme weight

Charmeuse Silk

Charmeuse is a luxury fabric made from silk with a satin finish. It has a floating appearance which drapes very well, especially for formal wear and luxury bed linen. We use the heaviest weight (19 momme) Charmeuse silk for all our silk bed linen.

For silk sheets a momme weight of 12-19 is considered good quality with silk sheets in the range of 16-19 being very high quality. Cheap silk sheets almost always have a low momme weight, because physically less silk has been used to make them. Anything lower than 12 momme feels lightweight and flimsy, and not particularly smooth or luxurious. It tears easily, is difficult to wash and doesn’t last long.

A-Grade Long-strand silk

Not only is our silk heavy in weight, but we also insist on using only long-strand silk. Although not often discussed outside the textile industry, the length of the strands makes a big difference to the feel of the silk and its strength and durability. Longer fibres produce smoother yarns. Shorter fibres have tiny surface ends which result in a fuzzier yarn that doesn’t feel as smooth.

Jasmine Silk Bed Linen

When you buy Jasmine Silk sheets, pillowcases or duvet covers you can be sure you are buying the best quality, made from100 percent mulberry silk with a momme weight of 19 and a thread count of 400. You can see and feel the difference, and you’ll find your bed linen washes well and lasts for years.

How silk is made

It takes approximately 30,000 silkworms to make just twelve pounds of raw silk. The most prized silk comes from a special type of silkworm that comes from the Bombyx Mori moth. This species produces a thread that is exceptionally round, fine, smooth and strong. The diet of the silkworms also makes a difference to the end product, and ours are fed only on leaves of the mulberry tree. In this we are extremely fortunate that the Hangzhou region where we make our silk is naturally rich in mulberry trees.

Silk is made by the silkworm as it builds its cocoon, and is extruded, or pushed out, in one continuous strand which is several hundred metres long. When unwound it is specially treated using ancient techniques, and then woven into the world’s finest luxury fabric.