First know your wool
Wool is the fiber derived from the fur of animals of the Caprinae family, principally sheep, but the hair of certain species of other mammals such as goats, llamas and rabbits may also be called wool. Wool has two distinguish qualities that keeps you warm
- it has scales which overlap like shingles on a roof
- it is crimped.
The spiky scales on wool fiber help the individual fibers attach to each other so that they stay together. The crimps in wool fiber have a greater bulk than other textiles and retain air, which causes the product to retain heat. Insulation also works both ways; wool does not conduct heat but act as an insulator to keep the body at an even temperature.
The amount of crimp corresponds to the thickness of the wool fibers. A fine wool like merino may have up to a hundred crimps per inch, while the coarser wools like karakul may have as few as one to two crimps per inch.
Fabric made from wool mainly falls into two main categories
- Woollen and
What is woollen and what is worsted?
Worsted wool is mainly use for making woven clothes like Coats & Jackets while woollen is used for making knitted items like Jumpers & Cardigans.
The essential feature of worsted wool is straightness of its fibers, in that the fibers lie parallel to each other. Worsted preparation refers to the way the fiber is prepared before spinning, using combs to force the fiber staples to lie parallel to each other. This produces overlapping untwisted strands called "slivers".
How are they made?
A roving is often used to spin woollen yarn, and wool top is often used to spin worsted yarn. Top and roving are rope like in appearance, in that they can be thick and long. The fibers in top all lie parallel to one another along the length, which makes top ideal for spinning worsted yarns and fibers in roving lie in all directions.
What are the differences between woollen and worsted?
Major difference between woolen and worsted is that later is more resistant to pilling also known as bobbing which creates little balls of fibers due to abrasion on the surface of your garment. Also woollen is coarser in feel than worsted.
Tell more about wool qualities
Some much loved qualities of wool include its greater ability to return to its natural length after being stretched than any artificial fiber. In water or steam, wool can stretch to about twice its length without breaking. It is also difficult to ignite making it highly flame resistant. That’s why fire blankets are made from wool. Further wool can absorb atmospheric moisture or give out moisture up to one third of its own weight.
Wool is a natural fibre subject to natural or organic decaying. It is Fashionable and comes in a wide choice of textures, weaves and weights, and is suitable for any style required. No fabric drapes like wool fabric. Wool felt covers piano hammers and it is used to absorb odors and noise in heavy machinery and stereo speakers. Ancient Greeks lined their helmets with felt and Roman legionnaires used breastplates made of wool felt. Wool fiber exteriors are hydrophobic (repel water) and the interior of the wool fiber is hydroscopic (attracts water; this makes a wool garment able to cover a wet diaper while inhibiting 'wicking' so outer garments remain dry.
Knowing your woollens and worsted now it is time to look at some essential tips for proper attention and care for your wool coats & jackets. If you follow these instructions you can wear them for a lifetime or even pass them on to few future generations.
Here’s how you should care for your wool coats & jackets
• Give 24 hour rest before the next wearing. Wool fibers will shed wrinkles and return to their original shape
• Hang woven wool garments on shaped or padded hangers
• Brush and air wool clothing after wear to remove surface soil and allow clothing to relax.
• Maintain minimum abrasion with hard surfaces to prevent pilling
• Clean wool garments periodically, not frequently, to avoid premature fiber wear. Spot clean with cool water or a spot cleaning agent for stain removal.
• Prior to long-term storage, clean wool garments thoroughly. Store with fresh cedar or other suitable moth repellents that can keep your clothes smelling pleasant.
• If the care instructions on your jacket mention “Dry Clean Only” follow the instructions to avoid any expensive mistakes.
• if you happen to stain or soil your jacket the best advice is to rinse the spot with cool water immediately
• Never wring or vigorously rub wool garments
• Dry them away from heat sources
• Set the iron on the wool setting.
• Do not press wool totally dry.
• Always use steam when pressing wool
• Press on the reverse side of the fabric.
• When it is necessary to press on the right side of the fashion fabric, use a press cloth to avoid a shine.
• Before deciding on a cleaning method for wool clothing, look for the care instruction label. We recommend only dry cleaning although some garments can be hand-washed and some even laundered by machine
• For dry-cleaned only, take it to a reliable dry cleaner. Identify any spots or stains for special treatment
• Although wool does not absorb liquids directly, it readily absorbs moisture in vapor form When wool is soiled, it is important to remove stains promptly.
A GUIDE FOR REMOVING COMMON STAINS
Alcohol or Food: Gently rub the spot with carbonated water
Glue: Sponge the spot with alcohol.
Ink: Immerse in cold water. Do not rub as this may spread to other areas
Cigarette Burns: Brush off ash with Butter and Grease. Sponge with dry cleaning solvent.
Chewing Gum: Scrape the spot first. Rub Using a good dry cleaning solvent and sponge
Chocolate: Soap out with a sponge full of cold water.
Coffee or Tea: Use warm water and sponge to rub the affected area.
Mud: Do not try to rub wet mud out. Let it dry first. Use warm or cold water to rid the dry mud.
Red Wine: First Immerse in cold water for few minutes before rubbing out
How to hang your wool Coat & Jacket properly
• Space your wool jackets when hanging; never hang them tightly together. Give the jacket enough space to breath
• Wool Jackets can be refreshed by hanging in a steamy bathroom (great travel tip)
• Allow wool jackets to rest at least 24 hours before repeat wearing to prolong garment life.
• Empty pockets when hanging your jacket to prevent shape distortion.
• Always use a strong hanger that can hold the weight of your jacket without distorting the shape.
• When hanging use a large enough hanger and its correct shape to support the shoulder areas and neck of your jacket. If the hanger is not supporting the shoulders the weight of the sleeves can pull down the shoulders.
• Always close the buttons specially if the buttons are heavy. If left open for a prolonged length of time heavy buttons can distort the shape of your jacket
Care in Storage
• Dry clean before storing for prolonged period of time. Moth larvae are attracted to areas of the cloth that are soiled with food stains and body oil, clothing kept clean in storage is the most effective protection.
• Keep closets, dresser drawers and trunks clean.
• Nicely fold your coats & jackets and place them in airtight containers – well-sealed garment bags or boxes and trunks with secure lids.
• If you are hanging your Coats or Jackets use strong and shaped hangers.
I hope I have given you some essential tips for better attention and better care for your wool coats & jackets. If you care for your coats and jackets like many of us do why not Invest in four key tools:
• lint tape roller
• clothes brush
• Proper Coat Hangers. Never use wire hangers for coats & jackets. If you can stretch your shopping budget slightly further, I advice to buy padded hangers as they give much needed support to retain the correct shape of your coats & jackets.
Use your lint brush or roller as often as possible to remove lint, hair, and surface dirt with the lint roller.
Be mindful not to jam your coats & jackets together with other clothing in your wardrobe or cupboard. Rotate your garments seasonally, storing your out-of-season clothes in a separate space.
Take care of your jackets regularly. Unless you have a spill or stains, you only have to dry-clean them once per season.