People have been using wool for thousands of years.
As Bill Bryson noted in his book ‘At Home’: “… the primary clothing material of the Middle Ages was wool.”
To this day, most wool produced is used for clothing. But it’s also used for so much more. It’s flexibility and durability, combined with its odour and fire-resistant properties, make it suitable for innumerable purposes, both decorative and functional.
Wool’s eco-friendly properties are helping to put wool in the spotlight with wool prices enjoying a 25-year high. New applications are continuously being developed for this sustainable and renewable material.
Here we take a look at some of the many applications of this universal fibre: from the traditional to the quirky, and the mundane to the innovative.
Open your wardrobe and you’ll no doubt find several items made of wool. Socks and jumpers. Maybe a suit or two as well. We tend to equate wool with winter, but it’s also ideal for summer. Lightweight summer wool clothing is a comfortable and practical option.
It absorbs and evaporates moisture keeping you dry and cool. As it doesn’t hold wrinkles, you look as fresh as you feel.
It’s obvious when a dress coat is made of wool, but did you know your puffer jacket might also be using this fabric to keep you warm? Wool fibre can be used for waddings (fillings), which provides superior breathability and insulation.
Whatever the season, however intensive the activity, wool insulation layer naturally adjusts to your body's thermal balance, improves perspiration comfort and keeps you drier from the inside, making it perfect for high-performance, outerwear apparel. Being exceptionally lightweight, it provides all the comfort without the bulk.
With flame retardancy up to 600 Centigrade, merino wool has long been the preferred material for firefighters’ uniforms. It doesn’t melt, shrink, or stick to skin when exposed to high temperatures, and has no toxic odours.
Wool is a top choice for high-quality carpets. Dig down a layer and you’ll likely find it in the padding underneath. Yarn ends and substandard wool are not wasted. Instead they are put to good use manufacturing underlay.
We’ve used wool blankets in our homes for years. Now we’re taking a lead from our mates down under by producing duvets made from wool. The Aussies have been doing this for years. Except there they call them doonas, not duvets. As wool is a natural fire-retardant, it doesn’t need to be treated with chemicals to meet fire-safety standards.
Post time: Mar-23-2021