Swans Island: Hand-Dyed, Hand-Woven Blankets in Maine

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A couple of years ago on a drive through Maine we discovered a local company, Swans Island, that hand-weaves the most beautiful blankets. They're on a rustic 17-acre farm in Northport Maine and we were wowed by their friendliness, and the the tradition they used when making these heirloom quality blankets. Sitting in our chilly Boston home this weekend around our first fall fire, we found ourselves remembering their simple, utilitarian beauty...

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Swans Island's is an island off of Acadia National Park. It was the original home of Swans Island blankets before they moved about 5 years ago (with the sheep!) to Northport Maine. The owners used to live in Boston and moved to Maine in 1990 to start up Swans Island. Finding local farmers who raised sheep, they learned to make their own dyes, how to weave on hand looms, and gradually discovered how to produce beautiful blankets. Each blanket is created using only the cleanest, softest fleece, hand-dying the yarn with all natural materials, and then doing all the weaving by hand. In 1996 Swans Island Blankets won a Smithsonian Blue Ribbon for Craft.

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These guys are part of a company and also a community that is all about creating beautiful things in authentic and earth-friendly ways. They love visitors to their studio and are very welcoming. So if you're planning a trip to Acadia this month to watch the leaves change colors, consider a stop in Northport for a real experience.

>>> Swans Island website