How much fun is twine? Yes… I do love my ribbons but there is something about twine that can be quite enticing – it can be rustic or functional or colourful or playful or sophisticated or any combination of the aforementioned. Plus, there are some stunning twines around at the moment and they simply cannot be ignored.
I felt it was incumbent on me to find the best twines going around for gift wrappers. I say for gift wrappers because twine has been round for centuries – doing its practical thing. Little did I know that there was so much to history surrounding twine and the twine merchants of the UK and Germany. Fascinating.
Twine goes by different names, and several varieties exist. Besides twine we have string, butchers string, cooking twine, butchers twine, baking string, baker’s twine, baling twine and of course gardening twine. While it won’t really matter much to your health if you don’t know the difference when you are gift wrapping (besides feeling physically distressed if the gift is wrapped poorly), the distinction between butcher’s twine and bakers twine is important when it comes to cooking.
The best and safest twine for cooking is made of natural or heat resistant fibres and is clearly labelled as butcher, kitchen or cooking twine. It should adhere to the “Global Standard for Food Safety” certification and manufactured in a strictly controlled hygienic environment. It should be able to withstand high-heat cooking without imparting any flavour into the food being cooked. The professionals suggest soaking twine it in water (or broth) to avoid burning particularly if it is being exposed to a naked flame. You can also get edible string, made of collagen. Who knew? Seems Hollywood lips and twine have something in common.
In contrast, baker’s twine is a thin type of string made of both cotton and polyester typically used for wrapping and binding baked goods. There are oodles and oodles of twines out there but not all are of the same quality. So here are my top wine finds for you to consider:
First up Henry Winning and Company if not for the name and logo alone which looks a little bit like something out of the musical Oliver to me.The UK based company has been supplying twine since the 1880’s and their pedigree shows.
Next, from Everlasto comes Beautiful Bakers Twine which is made in England by the UK’s sole manufacturer of cotton baker’s twine, James Lever a family owned business now in its sixth generation who have been manufacturing strings and twines in Bolton Lancashire since 1856.
From Scotland comes Nutscene who have been involved in the manufacturing and processing of jute twines and ancillary products for the gardener since 1922. Interestingly, the company patented the first “pull from the centre spool of garden twine” which they proclaim “ has been copied by many but never beaten”
The Nutscene name is derived from the company’s renowned green garden twine which, when tied around a plant cannot be scene thus “Not Seen” or Nutscene. Love it… though when I am wrapping with twine I certainly want it totally seen.
From Germany comes my current obsession Garn und Mehr which approaches the twine world from a design perceptive, working with leading German twine manufacturers – so you can bet when they say there is 45 metres on the spool there is indeed 45 metres exactly. The solid metallic twines are to die for.
Finally, a little nod to the US. Knot and Bow have some fabulous twines which builds on their strength of being fabulous repackagers. However, you can’t go past Divine Twines. They have a big presence and a lot of twine from which to choose.
Their Metallic range features their signature bakers twine with twists of colour – so it’s not solid but it is rather lovely and available gold, silver, rose gold, rose gold vintage, black diamond and icicle. Their twine is made in the USA and is biodegradable which is great for the environment. Divine Twine pops up all around the place, so it’s obviously good baker’s twine.
And finally a shout out to Whimsy Farm Twine – an Aussie venture based in country Victoria. The owner Angie used to own a dairy farm where she had around 400 cows; mostly Friesians, some Jerseys. That’s why all her yummy twines are named after her cows. You’d buy the twine for the names alone wouldn’t you? I have made many a tassel from Whimsy Farm Twine and it always comes up a treat.
Of course there are many more twines out there to wrap with – many of the major gift wrapping suppliers have a twine range… as do the discount variety stores …and the department stores…and the hardware stores. Seems there’s always time for twine.