Healing wool

Eugenia and Gemma crossed paths one day after a series of personal situations that made them step out of their respective comfort zones. They both felt that they wanted to give that which belongs to the Earth back to the Earth, and so they joined forces in an inspiring project, unique on Mallorca. At Llanatura they work with wool because being in contact with it heals them, and because they want to return it to the environment, so that this resource is no longer transformed into a waste product.

Eugenia’s first contact with wool came fifteen years ago. She was going through a difficult period of her life – a year earlier, her partner had passed away, leaving her with a one-and-a-half-year-old son, and pregnant with her daughter. When she was invited to take part in a wool workshop, she “was in the midst of a crisis; I had just met someone else, and even though I did want to start a new life, I felt judged and labelled”. Over the weekend of the workshop, the contact of her hands with the wool had a healing effect on Eugenia, helping her to briefly set her worries aside.

One day, at her work as an administrative clerk, “I was forced out of my comfort zone, and I decided wool would be my path”. She learned the trade in a region of the Pyrenees in Catalonia, and gradually began to work. She has been a wool artisan for ten years now.

Gemma, meanwhile, felt that working wool with her hands benefited her during her maternity leave after the birth of her second daughter. “What happens to all the wool on Mallorca? Because I keep seeing sheep and I don’t know where the wool goes...” is something Gemma asked herself frequently. “It reached a point where I needed to rediscover the girl I had once been, who studied environmental science, and really understand why I had done that. I knew that my vocation was to help solve environmental problems, and wool is an environmental problem”.

Eugenia and Gemma met shortly before the start of the pandemic, through a mutual friend who was a teacher to both women’s children. “It was written that we should find one another”, they say. They soon started working on a joint project that would give back locally, and have a triple impact: social, environmental and economical. “We call it Llanatura, because it’s a combination of three words in the Mallorcan language: llana, natura and atura, meaning wool, nature and halt, or stop”.

At Llanatura “we are suppliers of material and we created the brand so as to be able to translate it into a product that captivates people”. Eugenia and Gemma have no sheep of their own, but they do make decisions on sheering, and they wash the wool and apply all the necessary treatments and processes to it for manufacturing. “We make felt and sell coasters, espadrilles, blankets and rugs. All of the materials are sustainable, we work with the University of the Balearic Islands to try and treat the tons of wool that are produced in our community”. They calculate that Llanatura works with around two tons of wool a year, of the more than two hundred tons that are produced on the islands; “either it goes to China, or it is burnt, having no benefit on the people who looked after the sheep”.

After knocking on many doors, the only entity that decided to take a chance on them was the Es Garrover Foundation, which employs people with mental disorders. “We want to create jobs for them. These people may not be able to work in a conventional company, but they are capable of doing many things”, they explain.

Their main objective is “to use a resource in the way our grandparents did, because fifty or sixty years ago, wool was a luxury. We have to bring it back to life, because we are going to need circular production models in the future”.

Eugenia and Gemma are aware of the need to [...]


Read this article in full in IN PALMA 73. And if you like, subscribe to IN PALMA for 1 year and get the next 4 issues of the magazine delivered to your home.

Image modal Image modal
Suscríbete a nuestra Newsletter