One of my all time favorite yarns is mohair. It is usually a silk-like yarn made from the hair of the Angora Goat (not to be confused with the Angora Rabbit which produces Angora Wool). Both durable and resilient, mohair is notable for its high luster and sheen, which has helped gain it the nickname the “Diamond Fiber”, and is often used in fiber blends to add these qualities to a textile. But what else is special about mohair?
Angora Goats & Mohair
Mohair wool actually comes from the angora goat, named after Ankara in Turkey where the goats flourished after moving down from the mountains of Tibet centuries ago.
Mohair is composed mostly of keratin,, a protein found in the hair, wool, horns and skin of all mammals, but its special properties are unique to the Angora goat. While it has scales like wool, the scales are not fully developed, merely indicated. Thus, mohair does not felt as wool does.
Mohair fiber is approximately 25–45 microns in diameter. It increases in diameter with the age of the goat, growing along with the animal. Fine hair from younger animals is used for finer applications such as clothing, and the thicker hair from older animals is more often used for carpets and heavy fabrics intended for outerwear.
South Africa is the biggest global producer of mohair, producing approximately 50% of the world’s mohair. Most of South Africa’s Angora goats are farmed in the Karoo area of the Eastern Cape.
Mohair’s Unique Qualities
Mohair is a versatile and luxurious fibre that is coveted by the world’s fashion industry elite, as well as interior designers, craft specialists, industrial fibre specialists and the tourism sector.
- Lustre; mohair’s natural lustre gives garments a silky sheen.
- Lightweight: Mohair fabric is luxuriously lightweight and renowned for its versatility, staying cool in summer and warm in winter.
- Dye-responsive: Mohair responds magnificently to dyes, retaining even the most brilliant colours over time.
- Climate control: Mohair breathes naturally, absorbing and releasing atmospheric moisture and controlling its own ‘climate’ to ensure optimal comfort.
- Durability: Because of its pliability, mohair is rated as one of the world’s most durable fibres.
- Crease-resistant: Products made from mohair have an innate elasticity, which ensures that they hold their shape and do not crease.
Changed your mind about Mohair? Have a look at the beautiful hand dyed yarns we have available in our store. All our yarns are locally and ethically sourced and dyed using collected rain water with acid dyes that are not harmful to the environment.