The Wool Lab is an innovative seasonal guide to the best wool fabrics and yarns in the world. It showcases real samples of commercially available fabrics aligned to the season’s macro-themes.
The Wool Lab is created twice a year by The Woolmark Company to inspire and inform the textile industry, fashion professionals and retailers about the vast potential of Merino wool.
The Wool Lab is both a book providing inspirational themes and a sourcing guide. It is the result of extensive research undertaken by The Woolmark Company’s global network to select and showcase the best wool fabrics and yarns worldwide, and identify the emerging themes from fashion and other fields. It aims to inspire and influence emerging fashion trends.
Each edition of The Wool Lab includes swatches, mood boards, colour cards and presentations that tell a story for each of the themes and encourage brands and retailers to view and source wool as a premium fibre.
There are Autumn/Winter and Spring/Summer editions each year. It was first launched in June 2011 for the Autumn/Winter 2012/13 season, with the first Spring/Summer 2013 edition released in January of 2012.
It is an important tool for designers and brands as it helps them in sourcing and in finding new opportunities.
More than 100 of the world’s best spinners and weavers are involved in The Wool Lab, and it has generated more than 10,000 requests for swatches.
While The Wool Lab is presented globally during the most important trade shows including IDEABIELLA Moda In, Intertextile, ISPO, Première Vision, SPINEXPO, Pitti Uomo and Pitti Filati, there are two extra tools developed each season:
The Wool Lab Preview – released three months before the main The Wool Lab. It contains fabrics from the archives that reveal the season’s macro themes. The aim is to stimulate creativity and give inspiration to spinners and weavers, providing new examples of wool’s usability and innovations.
The Wool Lab Magazine – released simultaneously with The Wool Lab. It showcases images in a paper format of the commercially available fabrics. This is useful as a review of the themes and for ordering samples through The Woolmark Company’s network.
Each season The Wool Lab comprises, and is divided into, macro-themes, not only from fashion, but also from lifestyle, the world of design, pop culture and consumer values across many other fields.
After the macro-themes are defined, The Wool Lab Specialists visit the most significant archives of the world’s leading and most quality-oriented spinners and weavers to discover pieces that express the long-lasting and fascinating history of wool. The aim of this research is to find the most beautiful and innovative wool fabrics in the world and assemble them in a unique tool that rediscovers and reproduces the fabrics' tradition with a contemporary twist.
As well as containing fabric swatches made with the latest innovations in production techniques and special treatments, The Wool Lab also contains inspirational images and colour charts which best represent the latest themes.
The process is something unique that involves technical skills, know-how and passion.
The Wool Lab is created each season by The Woolmark Company in collaboration with the Riccardo Rami Studio based in Florence, Italy.
The Wool Lab is presented and available for consulting in 13 countries across the world.
Viewing of The Wool Lab is available free of charge and upon request.
The Wool Lab Specialist Network is a support that The Woolmark Company offers to all its stakeholders globally. It is a team of specialists with technical skills that can support all the different phases of the process from the research to the sourcing. They are part of a global network that visit companies to present and guarantee the high quality of the tool.
Contact The Woolmark Company for further information about The Wool Lab and to arrange potential viewing of it.