From being spun into yarn to making up a complete garment, natural fibres have a long journey to becoming the finished product. Barrie Knitwear has the process mastered down to a fine art.

The knitwear industry has long been one of Scotland’s most important assets, especially so in the borders. Historically, mills were run by families and the skills they possessed were inherited by the next generations. This ensured the standards of items being produced continued at a consistently high standard within the mills. The industry took a hit in production during the early 1900’s as a number of countries began to establish their own craftsmanship, though it can be argued that due to the naturally soft water, Scotland still produces some of the highest quality cashmere knitwear –and Barrie is no exception.
Each Barrie sweater goes through forty
processes before it is completed, and most
of these are carried out by hand



Founded in 1903 by Walter Barrie and Robert Kersel, Barrie Knitwear has been manufacturing cashmere garments in the Scottish Borders for over 110 years. The team are committed to crafting the highest quality garments, and their combined expertise means they are produced with ease. Fibre for cashmere is imported from the Kashmir goat’s native home, Mongolia. The environment in which they live helps to produce the finest cashmere fibre that cannot be replicated in any other location. The fibres are then brought to Scotland where they are spun by Todd and Duncan – who select a mix of the best lengths of fibre to reduce the chances of piling on the finished garment. Only the purest white fibres are selected to omit any damage caused to them by bleaching. From this point, Barrie dyes, weaves and knits their fashion garments from scratch, all in the Scottish Borders.

Each Barrie sweater goes through 40 processes before it is completed, and most of these are carried out by hand. During this manufacturing process, every individual garment is 100% quality checked by three quality controllers before it is approved.

The industry took a hit in production during the early 1900’s as a number of countries began to establish their own craftsmanship, though it can be argued that due to the naturally soft water, Scotland still produces some of the highest quality cashmere knitwear –and Barrie is no exception.


The company has produced the finest knitwear for designer brands for over 25 years, and have aided in initiatives preserve the skills of the industry. Despite producing a range of garments for various brands, Barrie ensures that the quality across all of their products is of the highest standard. No garment that they manufacture for any company receives any less care than the pieces that are crafted for higher-end designers – a legacy that Barrie will continue to uphold. 
 

No garment that they manufacture for any company receives any less care than the pieces that are crafted for higher-end designers

 
Barrie also works alongside local schools to pass on the skills required to work within the industry. The programme is a long-term training initiative established to help protect the craftsmanship within the field and to ensure future jobs are available to those wishing to progress in the knitwear industry. 

We work with Barrie to supply our fine range of cashmere that is stocked in our Knitwear and Cashmere Hall in store, alongside a number of other high-quality garments. Our Ladies Cashmere collection can also be found online.

Image sources: www.barrie.com