Winter + Wool

The arrival of fall and winter in California is not always particularly noticeable. In some warm years, it seems to take special powers of observation to realize that the season is changing at all. In other states, people look for chilly winds and golden leaves as heralds of autumn; I’ve learned to keep an eye out for seasonal beers (usually pumpkin) and early Christmas decorations. Perhaps the lack of real seasonal weather has contributed to my penchant for symbols of winter: boots and coats far warmer than necessary in an L.A. suburb, deep warm jewel tones, and all sorts of wool products.

1. Felted Poinsettia Wreath Kit from Pick Up Sticks
2. Ribboned Tweed Pouch from Anthropologie

My equation of wool with the arrival of winter (whether or not it’s Thanksgiving and still 90 degrees outside, like last year) isn’t the only reason to love this fiber. High quality Merino wool is as soft–even softer–as cottons, linens, and many other fibers; other types of sheep’s wool (like the Blue-faced Leicester pictured below) create fabrics with lovely, unique drapes; and wool lends stretchiness to yarn, making it easier and far more enjoyable to knit. Wool is naturally anti-fungal, fire resistant, and renewable. It’s incredibly versatile in terms of the fabric it creates, from thick wovens, stretchy knits, and dense felts of every conceivable weight and texture. Above all, wool is just plain warm and cozy–the perfect winter companion.

1. Indigo Moon Blue-faced Leicester Wool from Bobbin’s Nest Studio
2. Felt Office Storage from West Elm
3. Textured Felted Wool Bundle from Purl Soho

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