We’re excited to introduce Chris Chappell of Ramblers Way, who is our guest blogger today! Founded by Tom and Kate Chappell (Chris’ parents), Ramblers Way fine wool apparel is made entirely in the USA from start to finish. Not only that, but Ramblers Way comfortwear is also produced sustainably using all-natural dyes. So, with Earth Day just around the corner, what better time to learn just what makes wool so special – and eco-friendly!
Tom Chappell in a Ramblers Way hoodie
The Seven Things I Learned About Wool… From My Dad
My Dad is a hands-on man. His Dad was a hands-on man who managed textile mills throughout the East Coast. Growing up in Maine we spent a lot of time outside in the cold winters or in the hot and humid summers. I always had hand-me downs and certain sweaters became favorites, just as comforting as a stuffed animal. We had a farm too, with lots of chickens, pigs, etc. and a big garden. Over time he taught me a lot about natural, sustainable living as well as some finer things in life, including wool. Given that we’re leading into Earth Day, I thought I would pick one topic that I think is often misunderstood and I want to share it with you… it’s WOOL.
1. Wool is not always itchy! Well, it used to be when I was a kid with my favorite wool sweater. But, with superfine worsted yarn put into your wool clothes it’s not… at all.
2. Wool is sustainable and it’s natural. Synthetics don’t stand the same test of time and can acquire a stink that never comes out.
3. There are different kinds of wool. I know the most about Rambouillet wool because of my Dad’s farming interests. It is a long fiber wool that has elasticity which you won’t get from short fiber wool used to make woolen yarns. We use worsted yarns made from these long, harder to get fibers, spun parallel so no ends stick out and itch you.
4. Wool is warm. No… it’s cool. No, it’s warm. WAIT, it’s both! It lets the body’s natural cooling system work better – just like a sheep’s does.
5. It doesn’t smell, it’s naturally odor resistant due to it being a protein fiber which wicks moisture verses a cellulose fiber like cotton that attracts moisture.
6. Wool breathes. Yes, it breathes. There are a lot of tech fabrics out there but wool has never changed its ability to acclimate to the temperature.
7. It’s pure and natural from start to finish. Think about it, when you shear wool, it’s like harvesting a crop… grown by nature, renewable and sustainable.
It really is the perfect fabric… It’s simple. It’s sophisticated. It’s luxurious. AND, it’s comfortable, it regulates temperature, it travels well because it’s lightweight, doesn’t wrinkle and keeps its shape, and you know what? It looks good too!
I’m hoping that I might have taught you something more today, like my Dad taught me. If so, don’t keep it to yourself, pass it on!