The 2012 Design Search Winners will be announced very soon!...Thank you to everyone who contributed by submitting design ideas and/or voting for your favorite design concepts. At this time, our graphic artist is working on the CADS (computer-aided designs) and when completed, the New ChappyWrap Designs and the Winners will be revealed!
How are ChappyWrap blanket colors chosen? We visited our factory in Germany and collected swatches of every avaiable yarn color (more than 50 shades). When a new ChappyWrap design is introduced, we sit down with all the color swatches and try to pick the best color combination for that particular design. Currently there are about 50 shades represented in the ChappyWrap Collection.
How are ChappyWraps actually woven? ChappyWraps are woven on a Jacquard Loom, a textile machine used for weaving yarn into fabric. The jacquard loom was invented in 1801 by Joseph-Marie Jacquard from Lyons, France. He had inherited his family weaving business and was searching for a way to shorten the long, tedious weaving process in an effort to make his company more profitable. Joseph-Marie Jacquard recognized that although the weaving process was intricate with a large number of threads from the warp and the weft, it was highly repetitive. He believed that the weaving of complex patterns could be automated, hence inventing the Jacquard Loom that could raise each warp thread independently from the others, introducing it to the public in 1804 in Paris. It was the first machine to use the punch card system to control the sequence of operation. The automated loom allowed the fabric pattern to be depicted as a group of holes punched on a punch card allowing novice weavers to make intricately woven designs swiftly and dramatically changing a profession that had previously required well developed skills, practice, patience and hard work. The use of the punch card system was revolutionary; it established that design information could be stored on cards and used over and over again and that a machine was capable of following an algorithum. This information planted the initial seeds for the computer revolution and by 1812, after some resistence from the weavers who thought the machines would cost them their livelihood, there were 11,000 Jacquard Looms operating in France.
It took about two centuries to invent the Electronic Jacquard Loom (see picture below). The first was introduced by the Bonas Machine Company in 1983 and although the new electronic jacquard looms were expensive, they eliminated the punch cards and significantly reduced the time wasted in changing punched paper designs.
How do Chappywraps become fluffy blankets? The finishing process is called "napping" or "raising", a very old technique used by the Romans and depicted in pictures found in Pompeii. Rapidly moving cyliders covered with metal needles pass over the fibers of the fabric and raise the surface. This process creates a fuzzy surface on both sides of the fabric and makes Chappywraps the softest blankets. It also improves thermal insulation making ChappyWraps the warmest blankets. This operation particularly suits the cotton blend fabric used to make ChappyWraps, resulting in the softest, coziest and fluffiest blankets available.
And that is how ChappyWraps are made!
Stay tuned for the Design Search Winners and enjoy the rest of your Summer!
All the Best,
Beth and Monica