You will discover in La Scourtinerie weaving workshop 11 machines, all designed by the Fert family. The oldest, still in operation,was created in 1900. The most recent one is from the 60’s.
The machines, connected by large axles and belt were operated with the drivingforce of the canal stream until 1954.
The workshop, it is also 4 « scourtiniers » who weave and hand-finish the scourtins, which will be sold either on site at the shop or shipped all over Europe and even further.
The company’s story is not finished; Sophie, the founder’s great-great granddaughter joined the team in 2014, ensuring the continuity of this craft factory, unique in France.
You can come visit us!
The workshop is open to the public for free, during shop and museum opening hours.
For groups between 10 to 25 people, a guided tour can be organized in advance; please send us an email request by clicking on the button below. You will attend the demonstration of the manufacture of a scourtin in 4 stages. Duration is between 30 to 45 min (1 hour in total including the visit of the museum). Price is 4€ per person, with the possibility of making 2 groups if there is more than 25 people (it will then last around 1H15 in total, for both groups).
Periods of visits: from September to May, from Monday to Friday and only during the afternoon, from 2.30 to 5 pm. Beware, no group visits in the workshop during the summer season (June, July and August).
Conditions subject to governmental restrictions regarding the sanitary situation and the visit of companies and museums.
Please note that due to the sanitary restrictions in the context of Covid-19, and in order not to disturb the weavers in their work, we kindly ask you to keep your distance from the weavers.
Finally, and to better prepare your visit, we invite you to discover the stages of scourtins manufacturing below.
Making a scourtin
Coconut fiber skeins are first dyed on site in a range of 15 colors. Frederique then hang them in the courtyard.
Once they are dry, they are stored in a outbuilding next to the workshop and sorted by color.
The Fert family has always purchased the coconut fiber rope in the state of Kerala in southern India. This rope is hand-spun and selected for its high quality. In the workshop it is placed in bobbins to facilitate its handing for weaving.
The steel spindles are attached to a wheel, in odd number to weave the weft of the scourtin.
It first starts by hand before the electricity takes over. The weaving machine produces the weft with a steady rattling of the working spindles. Depending on the inspiration or the order, the weaving may be either plain or multicolored. To do so, the weaver alternates the yarn bobbins to create different patterns.
While consolidating the weaving, the puller (tireuse) removes the needles, which are replaced by the warp thread.
This is the last stage where a machine assists manual work.
To finalize the scourtin, no need for a machine to intervene, but rather the skilled hand of the crafperson. Rug center is completed with hooks and large needles, in order to obtain the traditionnal round shape. The oval shape is obtained by crocheting the center of the rug from right to left with the hook.