I recently cut myself a suit out of a length of escorial wool, never having worked with the cloth before. From the Escorial Group’s website-
Escorial is a rare and luxurious wool from a small sheep originating from the Spanish Royal flocks of El Escorial, today only to be found in small numbers in Australia and New Zealand.
The Escorial difference is in the heart of the fibre, performing as a naturally coiled spring.
This flexible characteristic creates a fabric that is incomparable in drape and resilience with a distinctive soft handle.
The suppleness and fluidity of the Escorial fabric delivers a garment of comfort and performance.
Escorial is often likened to curly hair. In comparison to straight hair, curly hair traps air between each strand, providing greater bounce and insulation. The special touch of Escorial comes from the airy nature of the fibre.
The Escorial fibre is like a curled spring and when stretched throughout production processes its natural memory is to return to the original curled state. It is this characteristic that makes Escorial garments, lightweight and resilient.
The story is one of sheep which had been kept by the King of Spain, ending up in Tasmania by way of Saxony. The whole story is interesting and can be read here. It is said that there are fewer of these purebred sheep than the extremely rare vicuna and that this accounts in part for the very steep price of woven escorial. I really enjoyed making it up, and it takes very well to the iron, but being a fall weight and finish it will be a few months before I get to actually wear it and see how it performs. So far I love the stuff.
Some random photos- the back still needs work, which is hard to do when fitting yourself. I have some time to get it fixed.