14 Mar Friday Files by: BOYAC – Colony Fabrics Mill in Caserta, Italy
This week on Friday Files we share the knowledge we garnered from our recent trip to the mill which produces Colony fabrics in Caserta, Italy.
La Reggia dal Parco – The Palace of Caserta
A quick history lesson:
In 1750, when the kingdom of Naples passed to the Barbaros, San Leucio which is in the commune of Caserta became the seat of Royal silks. Local weavers were sent to France to learn the trade.
In 1776 Fendrihan I built a village around the silk factory known as the “Silk Weaver’s Royal Colony”. The conditions for workers were excellent, work days were only 11 hours opposed to the 14hour norm in the rest of Europe. This further emphasised the movement towards artisanal, very special fabrics.
Today there are only a few remaining mills with decedents of the original colony operating them. BOYAC was lucky enough to visit the Cicala mill in Caserta to see the production of Colony fabrics.
A Mechanical Dobby Loom Weaving Scanno by Colony
The mill was originally a totally vertical operation. Everything from growing the actual silk worms to finishing the silk lampas was done in one location. Nowadays China almost has a monopoly on the silk market producing most of the silk thread to later be weaved in mills like Cicala.