Being in Britain, the weather often takes a turn for the worse, and virtually overnight has turned from Indian Summer to Narnia Winter. The market’s response has been a flood of fleece, from cashmere to run-of-the-mill wool, the more the better. Enter the fourth annual Wool Week, which has arrived just in time from 14 – 20 October 2013. To stimulate a little woolly thinking of your own, here’s four things you need to know about this year’s event.
1) The Campaign for Wool
Prince Charles introduced this global campaign in 2010 in a bid to get consumers enthusiastic about this natural, sustainable and comfortingly cosy fabric again. The launch event saw fifty sheep grazing on Savile Row and yellow sheep queuing to get into Selfridges.
Since then, the campaign’s annual Wool Week has become a truly global event with celebrations taking place across countries including, China, Italy, Germany, Spain and Korea. Demand for wool has increased massively, with many new mills opening in Britain and a threefold increase in the price farmers now receive for their wool.
2) Knit Nation
This year, Campaign for Wool have teamed up with John Lewis to offer free knitting classes from epic knitting brand Wool and the Gang, in both London and Edinburgh stores. There will be LIVE knitting all week in the Oxford Street window as knitters stitch their way around a plain white living room scene transforming it into a woollen wonderland. Take the chance to knit your own christmas jumper with the drop-in or scheduled classes, alongside celebrities such as Daisy Lowe and Oliver Proudlock.
Throw your own knitting party! Marie Wallin of Rowan has created a multi-coloured blanket pattern that you can download from the Campaign for Wool website. For some inspiration you can look at a map of the full list of knitting parties here.
4) Wool School
This enterprise kicked off last year in 2012, where 15 talented UK fashion, textiles and design students were paired with brands including Hobbs, Jigsaw, Topshop, Christopher Raeburn, M&S and Barbour to design and produce limited edition jumpers.
All jumpers must be comprised of at least 80% wool and keep this year’s theme of ‘Knitwear traditions of the British’, along with the retailers’ brand identity. The full list of winners, designs and stockists are available online – model of the moment Cara Delevingne has already been spotted out and about in Eliot Moran’s monochrome jumper for Christopher Raeburn.