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Published: 11 April 2020

By Andy Ross

Shetland tweed connections

Shetland and New Zealand have very strong links. Many Shetlanders left the islands to seek a better life elsewhere and New Zealand has been a final destination for many of those travellers. The consequence is that there are a host of connections between the islands. 

Last week an email from a New Zealander came through. Greg had been looking for more information about Annie Mouat, the weaver from Levenwick who owned Mouat's Cottage Weavers. Annie is the only woman weaver/ business owner that we know of in Shetland, and Greg had met her in 2000 on a visit to the islands. (There is a distant family connection between the two.) Greg bought a Mouat scarf which he proudly wore at his wedding, not only as a scarf but also as a cummerbund, and he sent two pictures of the scarf after finding the blog entry about this research. He calls this "Mouat Tartan" which is interesting because Shetland generally does not have a tartan tradition. 

Any information or pictures about tweed in Shetland, or recollections about the industry, are gratefully received. Thankl you, Greg, for getting in touch and sending on your pictures. I hope the scarf will continue to give you pleasure and help tie your Shetland and New Zealand connections strongly together.