Fonty is a gorgeously rustic and down to earth yarn brand. Spun in the heart of France, Fonty yarns are known for their high quality and commitment to environmentally sustainable production methods. The more you find out about the company behind this yarn, the more you will want to start projects with their fibres!
The story of the Fonty spinning mill takes place In Creuse, France, a three hour drive west of Lyon, where the site of the Fonty factory was originally home to an old grain mill dating back to the Middle Ages. In 1880, the mill was transformed into a spinning mill and the Fonty brand was born. Surrounded by the rolling hills and steep valleys of central France, the Fonty spinning mill still stands in the same place today and those who work for the company are the keepers of a rich and longstanding tradition of spinning that spans seven generations.
If all that romantic history isn’t enough to convince you, it’s worth knowing a bit more about Fonty’s dedication to environmentally sustainable production methods! In particular, they boast an impressive ecological water reprocessing station. Built in 2010, the station collects water from the nearby Cher River for use in washing and dyeing, and then uses natural reeds to filter and purify the water before returning it to the river even cleaner than its original state! This focus on sustainable water use is a meaningful nod to the long-standing history of water use in textile manufacturing, as prior to the 20th century, many textile spinning mills were powered by water. Of course, that is no longer the case, but textile production remains a water intensive industry and so it especially impressive to see Fonty manage their water use so thoughtfully and sustainably.
Fonty are transparent about all their manufacturing processes and if you fancy a trip to the rolling hills of central France, you can pop in to the Fonty mill on one of their open days, held on three weekends a year at the end of April, end of July and end of October. Further, once a month, their spinning team holds tours of the Fonty manufacturing workshops. In the space of an hour, you can see the steps necessary to transform a raw fleece into a beautiful ball of yarn that is ready to work with!
Today, the Fonty team is made up of 23 people, 19 of whom work in the manufacturing workshops. Fonty’s spinning mill is one of the last wool spinning and dyeing factories still active in France. Fonty has been recognised as a Living Heritage Company, which is a state honour in France that acknowledges the precious and traditional knowledge held and practiced by the Fonty mill.
Fonty yarns are elegantly straightforward. They have a purposeful presence that is both soft and full-bodied and their colour range is based around earthy neutrals, solid primaries and gezellig pastels. (Gezellig is a Dutch word meaning cosy, similar to hygge!). Fonty yarns are the ultimate all-rounders and we love them for sweaters, scarves, mittens, beanies and baby projects!
Written by Lia Weitzel for Ja Wol with information sourced from fonty.fr and Fonty’s Instagram, @fonty_officiel.
Photos from Fonty’s Instagram, @fonty_officiel.