The great diversity
of handcrafting

Historically, needlework, in all its forms and manifestations, arose out of necessity. The first handmade projects had practical purposes, such as clothing, blankets and shoes to protect from harm or cold.

The special thing about needlework is that it developed in different regions with the most diversified expressions and techniques. It is no coincidence that nowadays there is a great variety in the art of needlework: Crochet, knitting, sewing, quilting/quilting, tassel making, macramé, braiding, and much more.

Fashion, trends, spirit of the times

Depending on the fashion and taste of the time, a wide range of applications developed, ranging from decorative objects to toys to this day.

Economic aspects have also played a role from time immemorial, for example, most women knitted during World War II, as less wool was needed than for crochet.

The history
of MEZ

Carl MEZ and his sons founded the company “Carl Mez & Söhne”, later “MEZ AG Freiburg i.B.”, in 1785. The family business expanded steadily. The founder’s grandson, also named Carl Mez, acquired extensive knowledge in the fields of mechanics and technology. With his invention in 1828, the company expanded rapidly. He designed a twisting machine that could twist a continuous thread for the first time.

With his invention in 1828, the company expanded rapidly. Mez also revolutionized the way yarns were traded: He made sewing threads without lead so that threads were no longer sold by weight but by length. These two innovations, along with the focus on social responsibility, are considered today the cornerstone of the later success story and inherent company philosophy.

The sons of the company founder handed over the reins to the next generation in 1832. The three grandsons grew the business, built two new factories and founded several branches. When Carl Mez (the grandson of the founder) passed away in 1877, the company had over 1200 employees. After the company grew steadily under Carl Mez and was able to gradually expand into larger and larger territories, his sons took over in the middle of the 19th century and brought the company to a new level. A culture of innovation and continuous learning was maintained.

In 1922 the company turned into a public limited company and in 1932 the majority of the shares were taken over by the textile company of J. & P. Coats Ltd, Glasgow. Consequently, the family firm became a globally active group of companies. By its 150th anniversary in 1935, the company employed more than 2500 members of staff worldwide.

In 1984 Coats acquired the hand knitting yarn manufacturer Schachenmayr. This emerged from a small worsted spinning mill founded at the beginning of the 19th century in Salach near Göppingen, which was acquired in 1822 by a businessman from Aachen. In 1824, Leonhardt Schachenmayr joined the company as son-in-law and partner. In 1835, he took over the company and guided it to economic success. As a result, the number of workers also increased to around 1000 employees at the beginning of the 20th century. Following his death in 1871, his son-in-law Friedrich Bareiß took over the management of the company, followed by his sons. The company remained in family ownership until the general decline of the Württemberg textile industry in the early 1980s, which led to its sale to the British Coats group.

Through skillful networking, MEZ managed to supply its products in the creative and needlework sector to all of Europe and the USA within the next few decades. Coats decided to spin off the needlework division in 2015. Since 2020, MEZ has been part of the Swiss investment company LEVITO AG and employs around 500 people with an annual turnover of over 50 million euros.

The values of the founders and pioneers are still firmly embedded in the company’s philosophy to this day: Innovation, tradition, groundedness, customer proximity, style consciousness and creativity!

The MEZ brand world offers the complete range and can accompany customers from the selection of fabrics and tools to support for the creation process and takes pleasure in every piece that is created. Thanks to collaborations with designers and trendsetters, the company is at the cutting edge of the industry and MEZ is ready to bring the next innovation into the world!

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