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The Silk Story

 

    

With her treasures of a rosewood box, two blue dragons, and a small crushed silk handkerchief, Anna Pryor went in search of something she felt she knew from another time.

She flew to Hong Kong to teach English in September 2005 arriving on the tail of another typhoon that was sweeping across the islands and territories of China.  Driving through the rainy streets, she saw from the window of the red taxi, hawkers plying their trades in suits and shirts, and wondered how different it was and how far she was from home. 

Checked into a modest hotel with a view, she found herself perched high above a pearly, light filled harbor, bordered by glittering towers that beckoned with the promise of money and more. Meanwhile the restaurant downstairs welcomed every tourist especially the solo middle-aged woman with its simple Chinese and western meals.

Outside, amidst the Chanel and Gucci gloss, she saw it was still a place of junks and fishermen, of burning money and incense in the temples, of outdoor markets and a simple way of life.

 For two years she enjoyed working, living and learning about her new home and slowly the transition began:

 “I used to go across the border into mainland China, and often bought some of the beautiful silks that filled a small section of the fabric market.  Entranced like a child in a sweet shop, the colours and textures were the main attraction and because I had to have clothes made for work and other occasions, I chose designs that suited my own style and my passion for this amazing fabric.  Initially, most of my designs were simple, a nightdress or plain blouse, but gradually I experimented with more complex designs and different types of silk.

I’ve often wondered why silk?  In the early 1970s my mother used to have a shop called Ma Na which sold Indian silk clothes, jewellery and gifts.  I’d often work in the shop, and still have fond memories of lustrous, flowing, silk skirts and kaftans.  My first little black dress was silk crepe de chine, and very chic; or perhaps my childhood experience of keeping silkworms has something to do with it.  The family connection with Hong Kong and Guangzhou could have influenced me too.   My Great, Great, Uncle William Farmer is buried in Hong Kong, an entrepreneur and prominent hotelier in his time there … he also owned a hotel on Shamien Island called ‘The Swan’ but it is long gone.

Nevertheless, I think the most important reason for starting Silk Diva is that I personally love the look and feel of silk and I love wearing it.  I have always been an advocate of natural fibres and silk is at the top of my list.  It keeps me cool in summer and warm in winter.  

Silk is a paradox, it can be cool but warm, strong but soft, delicate but tough and heavy but light.   

So ... maybe it's a combination of all these factors that has inspired my great interest and love of this most beautiful fabric ...?

When I returned to Australia I decided to have a small number of nightdresses, chemises, pyjamas and robes made before coming back.  However, this range was very limited and I only risked a few designs, styles and sizes…but slowly I've expanded the range to include, shirts, dresses, pants, boxers, blouses, camisoles and pillow slips.

Since 2007 I've been going back twice a year to buy silk and experiment with different styles and designs. My last couple of trips took me further north, to the beginning of one of the many silk routes, where I found even more beautiful silks, such as the gorgeous georgette and chiffon I have had made into blouses.

Ultimately, my aim is to create a beautiful range of classic, comfortable, affordable, silk sleepwear, and daywear, for both men and women."

About Silk Diva Silk...            

Silk has a long history ... and it is beyond this simple website to explain how the humble Bombyx Mori silkworm was domesticated to produce a fibre that has since become the supreme textile it is today.  What we do know is that many countries produce silk, China, Japan, Vietnam, India, Africa, Turkey ... and many other nations weave and print silk fabric, such as France and Italy ... 

However, it is true that the earliest fragment of silk cloth was discovered in Henan Province, in China, in 3630 B.C. and that from this distant time silk making (sericulture) has spread to many corners of the globe along the famous silk routes. 

Therefore, after spending some time travelling, and hours reading about the benefits, and the attributes of silk, I have learnt that the Chinese were the first, and since these ancient times, have developed a sericulture industry that produces some of the finest silk in the world. 

So it has come about ... that China, is where the silk for the Silk Diva range is sourced.

Benefits of Silk

Many women and men really enjoy wearing silk ... to experience the lightness, the softness, the sheen, and the beautiful way silk drapes.

But... there is so much more to silk. Silk is unlike any other fibre, such as cotton, which retains moisture, or synthetics, which heat up and do not breathe.  Silk helps regulate body temperature, thus keeping us cool in summer and warm in winter. 

Silk is also hypoallergenic, due to its natural composition of amino acids, and breathes like a second skin.  Unlike synthetic fabrics which stop the airflow to your body, creating body odour and discomfort, silk rarely holds odour and can be worn many times without washing.

Hairdressers recommend sleeping on a silk pillow slip to keep hair smooth.  Beauticians also claim that sleeping on a silk pillow slip stops skin from premature wrinkling.

    True Beauty Sleep on a Silk Pillow Slip...

  • Cotton pillow cases draw moisture from your hair and skin, drying it out
  • Silk breathes, regulates temperature, is hypoallergenic, cool in summer and warm in winter
  • Silk stops your hair from splitting and eliminates bed head hair by allowing your hair to glide over the pillow
  • Silk prevents sleep creases, the drag and friction that causes skin to crease on cotton pillow slips

                                     

 

                                                                    

 

 

 

   

 

 

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With her treasures of a rosewood box, two blue dragons, and a small crushed silk handkerchief, Anna Pryor went in search of something she felt she knew from another time.

She flew to Hong Kong to teach English in September 2005 arriving on the tail of another typhoon that was sweeping across the islands and territories of China.  Driving through the rainy streets, she saw from the window of the red taxi, hawkers plying their trades in suits and shirts, and wondered how different it was and how far she was from home. 

Checked into a modest hotel with a view, she found herself perched high above a pearly, light filled harbor, bordered by glittering towers that beckoned with the promise of money and more. Meanwhile the restaurant downstairs welcomed every tourist especially the solo middle-aged woman with its simple Chinese and western meals.

Outside, amidst the Chanel and Gucci gloss, she saw it was still a place of junks and fishermen, of burning money and incense in the temples, of outdoor markets and a simple way of life.

 For two years she enjoyed working, living and learning about her new home and slowly the transition began:

 “I used to go across the border into mainland China, and often bought some of the beautiful silks that filled a small section of the fabric market.  Entranced like a child in a sweet shop, the colours and textures were the main attraction and because I had to have clothes made for work and other occasions, I chose designs that suited my own style and my passion for this amazing fabric.  Initially, most of my designs were simple, a nightdress or plain blouse, but gradually I experimented with more complex designs and different types of silk.

I’ve often wondered why silk?  In the early 1970s my mother used to have a shop called Ma Na which sold Indian silk clothes, jewellery and gifts.  I’d often work in the shop, and still have fond memories of lustrous, flowing, silk skirts and kaftans.  My first little black dress was silk crepe de chine, and very chic; or perhaps my childhood experience of keeping silkworms has something to do with it.  The family connection with Hong Kong and Guangzhou could have influenced me too.   My Great, Great, Uncle William Farmer is buried in Hong Kong, an entrepreneur and prominent hotelier in his time there … he also owned a hotel on Shamien Island called ‘The Swan’ but it is long gone.

Nevertheless, I think the most important reason for starting Silk Diva is that I personally love the look and feel of silk and I love wearing it.  I have always been an advocate of natural fibres and silk is at the top of my list.  It keeps me cool in summer and warm in winter.  

Silk is a paradox, it can be cool but warm, strong but soft, delicate but tough and heavy but light.   

So ... maybe it's a combination of all these factors that has inspired my great interest and love of this most beautiful fabric ...?

When I returned to Australia I decided to have a small number of nightdresses, chemises, pyjamas and robes made before coming back.  However, this range was very limited and I only risked a few designs, styles and sizes…but slowly I've expanded the range to include, shirts, dresses, pants, boxers, blouses, camisoles and pillow slips.

Since 2007 I've been going back twice a year to buy silk and experiment with different styles and designs. My last couple of trips took me further north, to the beginning of one of the many silk routes, where I found even more beautiful silks, such as the gorgeous georgette and chiffon I have had made into blouses.

Ultimately, my aim is to create a beautiful range of classic, comfortable, affordable, silk sleepwear, and daywear, for both men and women."

About Silk Diva Silk...            

Silk has a long history ... and it is beyond this simple website to explain how the humble Bombyx Mori silkworm was domesticated to produce a fibre that has since become the supreme textile it is today.  What we do know is that many countries produce silk, China, Japan, Vietnam, India, Africa, Turkey ... and many other nations weave and print silk fabric, such as France and Italy ... 

However, it is true that the earliest fragment of silk cloth was discovered in Henan Province, in China, in 3630 B.C. and that from this distant time silk making (sericulture) has spread to many corners of the globe along the famous silk routes. 

Therefore, after spending some time travelling, and hours reading about the benefits, and the attributes of silk, I have learnt that the Chinese were the first, and since these ancient times, have developed a sericulture industry that produces some of the finest silk in the world. 

So it has come about ... that China, is where the silk for the Silk Diva range is sourced.

Benefits of Silk

Many women and men really enjoy wearing silk ... to experience the lightness, the softness, the sheen, and the beautiful way silk drapes.

But... there is so much more to silk. Silk is unlike any other fibre, such as cotton, which retains moisture, or synthetics, which heat up and do not breathe.  Silk helps regulate body temperature, thus keeping us cool in summer and warm in winter. 

Silk is also hypoallergenic, due to its natural composition of amino acids, and breathes like a second skin.  Unlike synthetic fabrics which stop the airflow to your body, creating body odour and discomfort, silk rarely holds odour and can be worn many times without washing.

Hairdressers recommend sleeping on a silk pillow slip to keep hair smooth.  Beauticians also claim that sleeping on a silk pillow slip stops skin from premature wrinkling.

    True Beauty Sleep on a Silk Pillow Slip...

  • Cotton pillow cases draw moisture from your hair and skin, drying it out
  • Silk breathes, regulates temperature, is hypoallergenic, cool in summer and warm in winter
  • Silk stops your hair from splitting and eliminates bed head hair by allowing your hair to glide over the pillow
  • Silk prevents sleep creases, the drag and friction that causes skin to crease on cotton pillow slips

                                     

 

                                                                    

 

 

 

   

 

 

.

Size Tables (in cms)

Below is the Silk Diva Size Chart  for Silk Diva Clothing

Sizing Guide           SILK DIVA CLOTHING  
SIZE XS S M L XL XXL
8 10 12 14 16 18
BUST (cm) 87 92 97 102 107 112
WAIST (cm) 67 72 77 82 87 92
HIPS (cm) 94 99 104 109 114 119

 

Still need to convert? 

Here is a link to International Size Conversion Chart

http://www.onlineconversion.com/clothing_womens.htm

 

Hints   - Buy a Robe 1 size bigger if you like a lot of wrapover

           - Diva/Dan sizes can be made to measure

            -  All nightdresses are bias cut so will stretch and mould comfortably to your figure 

w's long robe   S/10 M/12 L/14 XL/16 XXL/18 Diva
length   122 124 126 128 130
bust   120 123 126 129 132
waist   120 123 126 129 132
hips   120 123 126 129 132
           
w's long nightdress   S M L XL XXL Diva
length   126 128 130 132 134
bust   93 96 99 102 105
waist   83 86 89 92 95
hips   97 100 103 106 109
w's short nightdress   S M L XL XXL Diva
length   94 96 98 100 102
bust   93 96 99 102 105
waist   83 86 89 92 95
hips   97 100 103 106 109
w's pjs   S M L XL XXL Diva
shirt length   68 70 72 74 76
bust   112 116 120 124 128
waist   100 105 110 115 120
hips   110 115 120 125 130
w's camisole set   S M L XL XXL Diva
top length   58 60 62 64 66
bust   93 96 99 102 105
waist   83 86 89 92 95
hips   97 100 103 106 109
pants length   26 28 30 32 34
hips   104 108 112 116 120
m's long sleeved pjs   S M L XL XXL Diva
shirt length   73 75 77 79 81
chest   116 120 124 128 132
sleeve length   55.7 57 58.3 59.6 61
pants length   99.5 101.5 103.5 105.5 107.5
hips   114 118 122 126 130
 
m's robe   S M L XL XXL Dan
length   117 120 123 126 129
chest   110 114 118 122 126
sleeve length   58 59 60 61 62