Malo is not just cashmere. Among the precious yarns characteristic of the brand, Makò cotton stands out,
a natural material of the highest quality from Egypt.
Its features are extra long fibres (equal to 33 mm and more), softness,
shine of the silk and a resistant and delicate texture.
Partly a legend, its history is even more fascinating than its qualities.
Between the end of the 1700s and the beginning of the 1800s, a young and enterprising French merchant visiting Egypt discovered a beautiful flower garden in the ancient city of Cairo owned by a local Bey sovereign called Mako. Flowers of all kinds grew in the garden, but one plant in particular attracted Monsieur Jumel's attention. They were long and thick cotton shrubs with large and showy yellow flowers. Monsieur Jumel collected some, examined them, returning several times to the garden, and at the end of the summer the flowers gave way to spherical fruits that then opened revealing white, soft and shiny balls. After careful observation, astonished by the extraordinary adaptability, Jumel became convinced it was possible to cultivate that type of cotton throughout the region. Enthusiastic, he spoke about it to the then Ottoman governor in the lands of Egypt, Mehemet Ali Pasha, who welcomed the idea and wasted no time in providing the necessary means to implement the project. Machinery was imported, land was drained, experts arrived, people were trained in the art of cultivation. Initially there were many difficulties as it was a completely new activity for those lands, but after several attempts the efforts and courage of its promoters were rewarded with success. The plantations prospered so quickly that in a few seasons they flourished throughout Egypt and soon the cotton trade became the main commercial activity in the region.
Monsieur Jumel did not become rich but that extraordinary Egyptian cotton, as resistant as it was soft, and as beautiful as silk, was given his name. Even this satisfaction was not destined to last, and out of jealousy the English snatched the glory from the French triumph. The new cotton was renamed The Mako Cotton, after the name of the Bey owner of the flower garden where Jumel first discovered those plants with extraordinary fruits, with that name Egyptian cotton discovered notoriety becoming synonymous with absolute quality among the thousand variations of the most widespread natural yarn in the world.
Surrounded by the arid and boiling dunes of the Sahara, the Nile valley and delta in the north of Egypt are among the most fertile agricultural areas on the planet, real oases that enjoy extraordinary climatic conditions, ideal for the cultivation of the best cotton in the world. In those lands the climate is mild all year round and the humid Mediterranean breezes keep the humidity quite high. Cotton cultivation begins at the end of March. The air is cooler in spring, suitable for promoting the growth of lower branches on young plants where cotton fibres can mature in the shade of the leaves above, protected from the warm North African sun. The harvest, strictly by hand, takes place in September in five phases to ensure that each boll is at the right point of maturity and the cotton inside is as uniform and regular as possible. Hand harvesting ensures full respect for nature by avoiding the use of defoliants and chemicals normally used with mechanical methods. The skill and experience of the farmers and spinners ensures the maximum purity of the fibres. Such precious materials require special care and the first stages of processing entail the removal of the imperfect fibres to guarantee the absolute quality of the yarn.
There are several parameters to consider in recognising the best cotton: variety, strength, uniformity, and colour. But for maximum quality, what matters above all is the length of the fibres. It is the essential element for the creation of premium yarns and for making fabrics that are precious, natural, resistant over time and very soft to the touch. Malo only chooses the best cotton, whose extra-long fibres can reach up to 35 mm. These fibres are relatively rare and account for only 2% of world cotton production.
Lavaggio e cura
I capi Malo realizzati in cotone Makò sono eleganti e confortevoli fatti per durare nel tempo, la loro cura è fondamentale affinché il cotone possa tenere testa al passare degli anni. Se eseguito correttamente ogni lavaggio renderà i tessuti più morbidi e manterrà i colori brillanti:
- È importante scegliere un detersivo per bucato di qualità e con pH equilibrato, utilizzandone solo la metà rispetto alla quantità che normalmente utilizzeresti. Assicurarsi che il detersivo utilizzato sia privo di candeggina. La candeggina danneggia le fibre di cotone naturali
- Evitare l’uso di ammorbidenti poiché i prodotti chimici aggressivi danneggiano le fibre naturali. I capi in cotone Makò diventeranno naturalmente più morbidi ad ogni lavaggio
- Impostare il programma della lavatrice su un lavaggio a freddo e delicato. L'acqua fredda evita il restringimento, una velocità di centrifuga bassa e delicata manterrà integra la trama del tessuto
- Stendere i capi non appena lavati sopra un asciugamano asciutto oppure appesi all’aria aperta
- I capi in cotone Makò vanno stirati quando sono ancora leggermente umidi, è importante mantenere la temperatura del ferro molto bassa per evitare di bruciare le fibre di cotone naturali