Myrrhia Knitwear Sustainably Made in California

Designer Myrrhia Resneck’s Spring 2013 collection features elegant, flattering, edgy knitwear, sustainably made in California.

One important part of sustainable fashion is local manufacturing, and it can still be challenging to have a fully “Made in the U.S.” fashion line. Oakland-based knitwear designer Myrrhia Resneck of Myrrhia Fine Knitwear has invested heavily in localized production and made it her goal to provide livelihoods in the textile industry in her community.

After one year of production, Myrrhia decided to invest in a Stoll knitting machine – currently the only one of its kind in Northern California – which she intends to use to create a micro industry for surrounding farms and other knitwear lines (NoCal designers, take note).

Myrrhia uses sustainable materials including locally sourced fiber from Northern California and wool and cotton that is sustainably grown and harvested as well as milled into yarn locally. The company is also involved with the Fibershed movement – an organization dedicated to regionalizing fiber sourcing.

In starting her knitwear line, Resneck continues a long-standing family tradition of fashion-related business endeavors. Her maternal great-grandfather started out peddling clothes out of the trunk of a car, her grandfather and great-uncle operated a chain of women’s clothing stores in the Midwest, and, at age 7, Resneck’s paternal grandmother taught her to knit. That same week, she had designed and completed her first project – a pair of green slippers. Fast forward a couple decades and although her focus has changed, that initial passion for knitwear remains.

Myrrhia’s knits and accessories are inspired by “friends and family, technology, and space.” The recently released Spring 2013 collection features patterned maxi skirts, lace knit tops, cropped and boyfriend cardigans, flowing long dresses of scrolling lace and playful short dresses of scoop and boatneck cuts as well as versatile infinity scarfs made of soft, silky knits. The pieces showcase the designer’s sustainability efforts, using fibers like un-dyed organic cotton (grown only 90 miles from Myrrhia’s studio by Foxfibre) and Lenzing Tencel, which is harvested sustainably from Eucalyptus trees.

The pieces are highly wearable, timeless, yet fashion forward. The geometric shapes, lace-like textures and elegantly paired colors work just as well for day as for night. The rich earthy tones and vibrant shades of blue, purple, and teal are universally flattering and goes beyond seasonality to suggest a style of “elegant-femininity-meets-majestic-warrior-goddess nuances.”

We think we can identify with that.

Johanna Björk

Johanna is a sustainable fashion writer currently based in Ojai, CA. Read her weekly On Trend column to learn what's new in eco fashion.