“Hello! My name is Ioana and I am the co-founder of the Lana Moeke company. I started the company together with my brother Radu and his wife Simina, in the beginning of 2014. I live in The Netherlands where I am about to get a PhD in Sociology and they have their life and business in Romania. You are probably wondering: so how did they come up with the idea of starting a wool company? Well, it is a long story but the short(er) version goes like this…
I was born in 1978 in Romania in a city called Oradea. That was still during the communist dictatorship. My brother is 3 years younger than me. During those times our parents had to work 6 days a week and the childcare facilities were not great, so our grandparents from my mother’s side took care of us. They lived in a small village surrounded by woods. We grow up in this wonderful place, with the purest air, the cleanest waters and the best food in the world. Of course, I am a bit biased but not very far from the truth!
Our grandparents were very special persons – loving, caring and hardworking. Especially our grandmother was a very important figure for both me and my brother – she was the glue that kept the family together. She was also very gifted with all things handmade. Not that she had a lot of choice – those times the shops did not have much to offer.
But life moved on: the revolution in 1989 brought the dawn of the communist era, my grandparents passed away, I grew up and followed my dream of becoming a sociologist and my brother started his own little business in Oradea. Maybe because I live now so far away from Romania and my life is so busy, I started to appreciate more and more those times when I was a child – the free and careless life following the natural rhythm of things. I took crocheting and knitting as hobbies as a way to reconnect to that part of my life and to keep alive the memory of my grandmother.
But then, last year, something happened. I went to visit my parents who now live in my grandparents’ house and looking through the things left from my grandmother I found two big bags with yarn. I remember that yarn: was hand-spun by my grandmother 16 years ago because she wanted to wave some bed spreads for us. But then she ran out of time due to a vicious illness…
The moment when I found that yarn was an inspiration to me. I realized that there is a potential there that is lost… Romania has quite a number of traditional sheep breeds and a long tradition in wool processing. But nowadays, due to bad economic circumstances, shepherds cannot sell their wool anymore so they burn it. Such a waste…
My decision to do something about it was immediate. I told my brother about my plan and he was immediately in. We would make yarns from Romanian wool, produced with traditional methods and no harmful chemicals, spun them in a traditional fiber mill and dye them with plants.
And here we are, a year after my holiday in Romania. It was an absolutely amazing adventure this year, but we managed to do what we aimed for: our first minimally processed traditional Romanian yarns are ready! I hope that you will enjoy them just like we enjoy our small contribution to the preservation of the traditional heritage of Romania!”
We will be closed Wednesday 19th,Thursday 20th and Friday 21st September to prepare for the unveiling of the new shop refurbishments. We apologise for any inconvenience. Online orders can be placed as normal. Dismiss
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