About Russian Shawls

Shawls, scarves, wraps, throws, and kerchiefs have all been a traditional article of clothing, as well as an ornamental piece of art, for an innumerable amount of cultures spanning across the globe and throughout time. The multi-purpose clothing, accessories, and decorations have only gained more popularity as time goes on. The word shawl is actually native to Persian culture, and is derived from the word Shal (quite a stretch, huh?) The use of the word, and the shawls importance in Persian culture lead many to believe this garment originated in Persia. However this is hard to verify. The design, and idea, or a loose fitting cloth draped over the shoulders, or waist has been seen in many cultures traditional clothing.

It is our (slightly biased) opinion that the best shawls you can find are the wool, and silk variety of Russian shawls. Traditional Russian shawls and textiles in general, were once produced in large quantities by a plethora of shawl factories in Russia. With the harsh Russian winters, and a culture known for its distinct, and practical fashion, there’s no question of why a warm, comfortable, aesthetically pleasing, natural wool shawl was so popular throughout the country. As we enter the modern age of globalization many of these shawl factories have become unprofitable as skilled labor from Asia could produce the same quality for a cheaper price. There is however one exception, one Russian shawl factory which produced shawls of such a fine quality that replicas and knock-offs would not be suitable, this staple of Russian culture is where all our Russian wool, and silk shawls and scarves are imported from: the Pavlovo Posad Shawl factory located in the Russian town of the same name.

Russian Shawls

Pavlovo Posad Shawls

It’s no coincidence, nor is a stroke of luck that the Pavlovo Posad Shawl factory, located a few dozen miles from Moscow, is still producing traditional Shawls which are made in Russia as opposed to using outsourced labor, and it’s no fad that their shawls are so highly sought after…

There’s a reason why it’s actually the ONLY factory producing shawls on a large scale in Russia; The Pavlovo Posad Factory produces a product of such a high quality that simply cannot be matched by any other factory outside of the small Russian town which has been passing down the traditions, and skills to make these distinct Russian shawls for over 210 years.

The shawl factory in Pavlovo Posad has been making shawls, wraps, throws, kerchiefs, and the ever popular scarf since it first opened its doors in 1795, and aside from a brief period of inactivity in the years following the Bolshevik revolution, it’s been producing awe inspiring wool shawls, and silk scarves ever since. While other textile factories in Pavlovo Posad has given up on the shawl, and started making fire hoses, or whatever else they could produce to stay profitable, the world demand of the multiple award winning shawls from Pavlosky Posad allowed this factory to keep making their wool and silk garments.

All of our shawls come from the famous Pavlovo Posad Shawl Factory.

Watch a video on ways to tie Russian scarves in our blog post, 11 Russian Ways To Tie Your Scarf. There is also a video called How to tie and wrap your shawl, that you’ll want to watch as well.

Caring for Wool – Please note that The Russian Store advises to ALWAYS dry clean your shawl or scarf.

Russian shawls are usually bright and colorful. To help them stay that way, dry clean your shawl if it needs cleaning. However, we included simple washing instructions for your convenience…

    • Make sure it really needs a wash!

Wool is a special material that does not need to be washed as frequently as other materials. Consider spot washing as opposed to washing the whole shawl, if there is only one area soiled.

    • Soak in cold water

Soaking your shawl in cold water until it’s completely wet is said to help prevent shrinking.

    • Wash in the right detergent

Be careful which detergent you use, and be mindful of how much of it you use. You want the mildest detergent made for wool. Dissolve a very small amount of mild detergent in water before adding your shawl. Carefully hand wash the shawl, making sure not to rub the fabric together.

    • Air-dry

Let the shawl air dry. Do not twist or wring out excess water. Instead, lay it on a towel and roll it up with the towel, gently pressing as you go.

Thanks wikihow for great tips!