There is a fundamental reason why we exclusively sell linen fabrics produced in Europe. This blog post will discuss the source of linen fabric in detail, mainly why European Linen is so extraordinary.
Knowledge Of Linen
As a preface to this blog post, let’s take a moment to start at the very beginning. Owner Carlos Rodrigues is known for his craftsmanship and expertise in traditional artisan upholstery, having been brought up with the skills he acquired through his childhood in Portugal.
In 1994 Carlos opened Provincial Upholstery in the Southern Highlands of NSW Australia and had come to be highly regarded in the industry for unique and historic restorations. Over the years, Carlos’s knowledge and passion for the craft and his wife Fernanda’s expertise in fabrics and design led them to launch Provincial Fabric House.
Our upholstery power couple now travels internationally to source a select range of unique and beautifully crafted high-quality fabrics for upholstery and furnishings.
Throughout Carlos’s career working in Portugal, he has learnt how to distinguish quality. From the exact source of the fibre through to the finished product. This is the very reason why he only imports the highest quality linen fabric from Europe.
A finished product is defined by its craftsmanship and quality. If any of the two is missing, you have a sub-par finish.
So, here’s what sets European linen apart from the rest, where linen is produced and why Provincial Fabric House has the highest quality linen fabric available on the market.
Quality Comes From the Source of Linen Fabric
So, you may be wondering how and where is linen produced? Linen is made from flax and is grown all over the world. However, European linen fabric comes from flax grown in a wide coastal band of Western Europe stretching from France to Belgium and the Netherlands.
European linen cultivation cannot be relocated or replicated due to a unique combination of European environmental factors; a natural damp ocean climate, flax’s low thermal density, and rich soil. These unique climatic conditions produce long, strong fibres which allow the flax to reach up to 1 meter in height.
There are linen/flax producers in other parts of the world characterised by different climatic conditions that are not as favourable to the growth of flax fibres. For example, flax plants grown in North Africa produce a shorter thread, where the climactic conditions are dry and hot.
When these fibres are processed into fabrics or twines, they tend to break at lower thresholds, leading to a poorer quality finished product.
Flax that is grown elsewhere doesn’t grow with the same height or quality. Hence, the long and lustrous nature of Western Europe’s flax fibre has a very high breakage point and is, therefore, what makes this particular linen fabric the highest quality in the world.
Additionally, this unique plant textile is the only fibre originating on the continent, and therefore knowledge and experience in handling flax is centuries old.
Regulated Quality Controls
Due to the centuries-old history of Flax and Linen production in Europe and their pride in the quality of products produced, our fabric producers proudly belong to a regulatory board called the MASTERS OF LINEN®.
MASTERS OF LINEN® is a registered mark and sign of excellence for linen 100% Made in EUROPE, from field to yarn to fabric. By purchasing fabrics with this mark of quality, consumers are not only receiving the highest quality linen fabric on the market, but they are also supporting sustainable production, respect for the environment, social ethics, and excellence in innovation.
Now let’s talk about Belgian Linen. After World War II, Belgian weavers joined forces to found the Belgian Flax and Linen Association. In 1960, they created the Belgian linen quality label to highlight the unique qualities of Belgian linen.
Belgian Linen is widely regarded as the highest quality linen fabric globally. Linen fabrics carrying the Belgian linen quality label contain a minimum of 85% European flax fibre and are woven in Belgium.
These products have a certificate of origin, allowing them to be traced to their source. This is your guarantee of Belgian linen of the highest quality.
Quality is important to us, and this is why we sell only European Linens.
As always, feel free to contact us if you have any questions about our fabrics or upholstery supplies.