About The Silk Route

Geoff and Hilary

The Silk Route has been trading since 1989 and is a leading retail supplier of pure, quality silk fabrics in small pieces and by the metre, together with a range of silk threads and complementary products. We have a very large range of coloured and textured silks, singly or in co-ordinated packs.

We offer a fast mail order service and attend many of the major needlework, textile and creative events in the UK.

We also offer a Colour Consultancy service in which we can try to match our silk to your requirements or can offer a selection of colours that co-ordinate with, or complement, your needs.

Please call us on +44 (0)1252 835781, drop us an email to hilary@thesilkroute.co.uk or write to us at The Silk Route, Cross Cottage, Cross Lane, Frimley Green, Surrey, GU16 6LN, UK. Please note this address is for MAIL ORDER SERVICE ONLY.

A Few Words About Silk

Our products

Silk is a natural fibre.  The weaving of this fabric may therefore contain minor variations and irregularities.  These are inherent characteristics of silk yarn and part of its beauty and allure.  These characteristics are entirely natural and should, in no way, be considered as defects.

Other than our range of natural silk that is to be prepared for dyeing, silk fabric should not be washed as this will remove the dressing and therefore the silk’s crispness.  Our silk should be professionally dry-cleaned where essential cleaning is necessary.  However, we do not guarantee the results of dry-cleaning (nor do many dry-cleaners!).  It is not necessary to wash silk prior to quilting.  Where natural silk is being prepared for dyeing it may be washed gently in warm water and ironed with a cool iron while still wet

The dyes used in the production of coloured silk, especially strong colours such as red, are not always colourfast.  There is a risk of fading from prolonged exposure to direct sunlight.  We always recommend lining and interlining when making curtains using a protection on the leading edge of the curtain.

Due to inherent production processes the sizes that we state on our website or labels are notional/approximate and may vary slightly from that stated.  Sizes stated may include the selvedge.

Should it be necessary to iron silk fabric use a cool iron only on the reverse side with a pressing cloth.

Re-ordering and colour matching

Most of our items we hold in stock, and can re-order when stocks are low.  However, part of our range is one-off stock and when stock is finished we are unable to order more.  When ordering, should you believe that you may want further supplies, please ask at the time whether repeat orders are possible.

As silk is woven to order (and the threads dyed to specific colours for each weaving), subsequent deliveries may be from a different batch and there may be slight colour variations between deliveries.  Should you want exact matching of colours please ensure that you order sufficient at the time.

The Silk that I received is a different colour from that which is displayed on your website

Silk, especially shot silk and silk brocades, is difficult to photograph as often the colour appears to change when the light falls on it from different angles.  That is part of the beauty of silk!  Also, the same photograph will look different on different screens, be they computer, tablet or phone, due to the technology used, the screen settings and the age of the device.  If the silk that you received is totally wrong for you requirements please return it to us uncut, and in its original packaging, and we will replace it with something more suitable or refund the cost of the silk.  (See our Returns Policy.)

If it is important that you match an exact shade please send us a snippet, or a colour sample for us to match.  We can also supply samples of the various silks in a particular colour range.

How to care for silk

Silk is a natural fibre. It has been widely used in fashion, furnishings and craft for over 2 millennia. However, silk can easily mark, even with water. Care should be taken when cleaning.

Do not use spot remover or any product containing bleach. Alcohol may damage silk so let hairspray or perfume dry before dressing.

Where silk is used in a purchased garment then the care instructions on the label should be followed.

Where essential cleaning is required and where no such instructions are available then normally silk should be professionally dry-cleaned rather than washed. Some types of silk contain some form of dressing and washing will remove this, together with the silk’s inherent crispness. Dry cleaning is not recommended where the fabric contains metallic thread.

Some dyes used in the production of coloured silk, especially strong colours such as red, are not always colourfast. If washing, test for colour-fastness by wetting a small area in cool water and then pressing it on to some white material with a cool iron. If no colour residue is left on the white material then washing may be considered.

Machine washing should be avoided unless advised on the care label. When washing silk gentle hand washing is recommended. Luke warm water and a mild, non-alkaline soap should be used. Harsh detergents and those containing bleach or brighteners must be avoided. Soaking for more than a few minutes should be avoided. When rinsing, a little white vinegar can be added to remove any soap residue completely. The silk can then be rolled in a towel to remove excess water – do not twist or ring. Silk should normally be hung to dry, avoiding direct sunlight or direct heat. Where ironing is required, silk should be ironed when still damp using a ‘silk’ setting if one is indicated, otherwise using a cool setting. Fabric should be ironed on the reverse with a pressing cloth. The steam function of irons should not be used as this may leave water marks. ‘Scrunchie’ scarves or clothes should be rolled into their natural shape whilst still wet and allowed to dry naturally, without ironing.

It is not necessary to wash silk prior to quilting. Where natural silk is being prepared for dyeing or painting it may be washed gently as above to remove excess dressing so that the dyes or paints may take more evenly.

Silk can be used for curtains although there is a risk of fading from prolonged exposure to direct sunlight. Lining and interlining should be used.