Another year has flown by, and it’s finally upon us! A week-long celebration in the efforts to promote the ethical use of wool throughout the industries; fashion, interior design, October isn’t just the month we delight in all things spooky for Halloween, but the fabulous Wool Week extravaganza.
For the Love of Wool
Wool is a protein fibre formed in the skin of sheep, and is thus one hundred percent natural, not man-made. Since the Stone Age, it has been appreciated as one of the most effective forms of all-weather protection known to man, and science is yet to produce a fibre which matches its unique properties.
As long as there is grass to graze on, every year sheep will produce a new fleece; making wool a renewable fibre source. Wool-growers actively work to safeguard the environment and improve efficiency, endeavouring to make the wool industry sustainable for future generations.
At the end of its useful life, wool can be returned to the soil, where it decomposes, releasing valuable nutrients into the ground. When a natural wool fibre is disposed of in soil, it takes a very short time to break down, whereas most synthetics are extremely slow to degrade.
Who is CfW?
The Campaign for Wool is a global endeavour initiated by its patron, His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, in order to raise awareness amongst consumers about the unique, natural, renewable and biodegradable benefits offered by the fibre.
Encouraging collaborations between an international community of wool-growers, major fashion designers, retailers, manufacturers, artisans and interior designers, the Campaign has been instrumental in educating consumers about the versatility of wool, and reconnecting them with its myriad uses; From luxurious fine merino knitwear and cloth through beautiful hardwearing interior products to fire-retardant insulation for the home.
Since its launch in 2010, The Campaign for Wool has influenced a new demand for wool on an international scale, and its efforts have seen an outstanding threefold increase in the price farmers receive for their wool.
Wool is part of the very fabric of Brora...pun intended! Together with cashmere, our vision of the glamorous country woman would simply be incomplete without the remarkable look and feel of quality wool. As Founder & Creative Director, Victoria Stapleton has made wool a strong part of our ethos, in supporting our rich heritage aesthetic, that's also made in Britain.
For the past four years, Brora has been instrumental in advocating Prince Charles' efforts with the campaign for wool. Taking part in CfW's dedicated social activities to raise awareness, Brora joined the 'Wool Ride', a bike ride across central London with competing retailers, as well as the 'Wool School' project, which saw 12 brands work with university students to create a jumper, where 5% of the sales were invested back into the wool industries.
Continuing with the same vein, this year we partnered again with a lucky university, running an initial competition, set to a brief, to design a concept for the Wool Week jumper that's inspiring and captures the essence of Brora's identity.
The winning design from Dundee University's Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Julie Mapes' extraordinary design captures the scenic views of an industrialised British landscape, based on our AW16 City Sky collection. Using the image of smoking chimneys set against a colourful horizon, this year's Campaign for Wool inspired jumper for Wool Week, repeats the rooftop pattern in a boldly geometric design.
Julie vividly captures the essence of hard-working, industrial Britain, beautifully working the existing Brora colours, brilliantly bringing to life this strong concept through the use of 100% wool and a striking repeat pattern. You can see more on Julie's work for us at her website here, as well as the new projects she's working on.
So proud of our extraordinary Wool Week jumper, we've created a giant-sized version to display in our Sloane Square window in Chelsea. Come along and see this epic, spectacle for yourselves; a great #selfie-worthy background, we'd say.