The Wool Lab has become an important tool for highlighting and inspiring the global apparel industry to source the best Merino wool fabrics and yarns in the world, identifying emerging trends in fashion and other fields from design to art, music and pop culture.
For the first time the guide will be completely focused on the Spring Summer season: an unexpected and amazing overview of wool’s natural benefits and adaptability for the warmer months. The Wool Lab will propose eight inspiring themes for the next Spring Summer season.
Some of them are macro-trends, “long-waves” that have been present in fashion and lifestyle during the past seasons and that will continue to have a great influence. Others are emerging new trends, reflecting the “esprit du temps” and the upcoming needs of the future market.
The trends are presented through a collection of images, describing the mood, style and atmosphere of each specific theme and a selection of the most interesting fabrics and yarns available on the market from the best spinners and weavers in the world. To complete the guide, The Woolmark Company has added an exclusive collection of precious pieces, from the company’s archive, to stimulate contemporary interpretations of great wool productions of the past.
In addition to the trends for Spring Summer 2013, this edition of The Wool Lab includes for the first time a section dedicated to sportswear, unveiling the natural qualities and performances that Merino wool guarantees in this particular sector.
The themes for Spring Summer 2013 are:
1. COOL WOOL
A definitive return to elegance in the Spring Summer season and a growing desire for quality, driven by the younger generations. The Wool Lab captures the trend and answers it, proposing a collection of the finest and most precious wool, in its lighter variations, conceived for an elegant and “reassuring” style, renewing classic materials, volumes and colours.
There are two potential interpretations of the Cool Wool mood: the first is more traditional and rigid, the second is more relaxed and easy.
- La Dolce Vita
A more formal mood and inspiration with modern accents and unexpected touches, to capture a younger consumer who is looking for materials of higher quality. The finest wool is the absolute protagonist, mixed with mohair or silk, to increase the “summer” effect. Natural and classic colours, including two families: “Greyish to Blueish” and “Greige to Beige”.
Newport is the summer interpretation of the new preppy style proposed in last season’s The Wool Lab. It’s actually a long-term trend, celebrating the WASP aesthetic through a continuous renewal, season after season.
Newport is a description of the style of the holiday spots of the American east coast, full of Kennedy-inspired memories and atmosphere evoking the Great Gatsby, with a more relaxed mood: the most precious wool is mixed with cotton or linen, to get an “easy” look. Jersey and fine knits complete the theme, providing accents of colour.
The Wool Lab identifies with Pop, the emerging trend of the coming back of colours, as an antidote to the uncertainties and difficulties of the present historical period.
Pop proposes the intense tones, the bold mixes and the irony of the American Pop Art: a vital energy that expresses itself through vitamin shades, “colour blocks” mixed together to surprise and break the rules.
It’s a new way, with dandy influences, to live and interpret the colour, perfectly expressed by Merino wool. Thanks to its natural physical features, the fibre is particularly suitable to absorb and maintain every type of dye, assuring long lasting brilliance to colours.
It is the summer version of the ‘Pure’ trend, inaugurated in the first edition of The Wool Lab. It expresses the great themes of ecology and sustainability in fashion and apparel, answering the growing requests for natural, safe and eco-friendly materials and treatments coming from consumers all over the world and particularly from the mature markets.
Pure is a celebration of the green potential of Merino wool, and proposes wool products, with no artificial dyes or chemical treatments, that highlight natural lightness, fineness and softness. Here wool is mixed exclusively with natural fibres of plant origin such as cotton, linen and hemp, to describe a feminine, ethereal and essential look, in which nature and simplicity dominate.
4. SAINT TROPEZ
Coherently with the emerging trend of a hyper-femininity, the theme proposes an atmosphere inspired by the mood of the French Côte d’Azur: sensual and light-hearted, perfectly embodied by Brigitte Bardot, the eternal icon of Saint Tropez.
Merino wool is surprisingly perfect to express a style which is so feminine and innovative: its richness and versatility allows the creation of unexpected forms and structures through yarns and fabrics of great quality, renewed through poetic interpretation. Saint Tropez proposes new wool crochet, embroideries and laces made with the lightest and finest Merino, celebrating the preciousness of the fibre.
Under the Tribes title, The Wool Lab collects the street interpretation of wool for Spring Summer 2013, declaring the revamp of the authentic street style, conceived as a way to express the aesthetic and taste of the young generation.
With a new interpretation of the most influencing street styles and movements of the past century, Tribes unveils the rebel side of wool for the next Spring Summer. The theme comprehends two moods:
The rockabilly style and the taste of the most important American and European music cultures are greatly influencing fashion and lifestyle. The Wool Lab has captured the trend and proposes a contemporary variation of the rockabilly style, typical of the fifties and sixties, maintaining its unique sense of volumes and proportions. The result is a new revival of formal men’s and women’s dressing, invoking the energy of the first generation that dared to declare rock as a true lifestyle. There are fifties-inspired volumes, graphic printings, optical effects, with a palette made of black and white with accents of red and grey.
The theme describes the “patent” casual style of the urban bands, the revolution of formal dressing for everyday and “on road” usage, mixing the street inspiration with folk accents. Merino wool unveils its casual and “street” side, taking on a “used” and “lived in” look.
6. LIMITED EDITION
The Limited Edition theme, contained in the previous The Wool Lab, is renewed for the Spring Summer season. The trend is still focused on the excellence of the world’s wool production, proposing a collection of the most exclusive and finest fabrics and yarns, with a micron range from 11 to 15. They are unique and precious creations that celebrate the fineness of Australian Merino wool, conceived for niche consumers looking for the most prestigious and rare products in the world.
THE WOOL LAB SS13 SPORT
In addition to the seasonal trends, The Wool Lab for the first time presents a section dedicated to sportswear, emphasising the fibre’s benefits and unique technical performances, and debunking definitely the cliché of wool prickling next to skin. Merino wool has positioned itself as the leading natural fibre in the sportswear sector thanks to its unique natural features and benefits. Through a selection of the best fabrics and yarns in wool, The Wool Lab shows the potential of Merino wool and unveils its incredible fineness, softness and lightness: features that make wool the most comfortable and performing choice, also during the warmer seasons.
The Wool Lab SS13 highlights a selection of fabrics and yarns produced for sportswear suitable for Spring Summer collections presented in two distinct moods: Sport Style and Performance.
- Sport Style
Sport Style expresses the role of Merino wool as a fundamental element of the classic wardrobe of the most refined and exclusive sports such as golf, horse-riding, sailing and polo. In Sport Style, the attention to the benefits and technical features guaranteed by the fibre is mixed with the attributes of comfort and style: a combination of performance and elegance, in a wide range of variations.
The most performing wool fabrics and yarns, mixed with technical fibres to ensure the best results during physical activity.
Examples of this theme highlight the technology enriched with the most innovative finishing and treatments, suitable to match every climate and discipline, indoor and outdoor.
Focusing on sportswear, both in Spring Summer and Autumn Winter, the natural qualities and benefits of Merino wool are almost infinite:
Wool fibres can absorb large quantities of moisture vapour and then move it away to evaporate into the air, keeping the skin fresher and drier for a longer time.
Wool is an active fibre with a natural crimp which creates a lot of very small insulating air pockets that it is how it helps keep you warm in cold conditions and cool in hot conditions.
Thanks to its breathability and to its complex chemical structure, that locks away the unpleasant odour molecules, Merino wool helps to reduce the sweat and its odour, keeping the wearer’s skin drier and cleaner.
Soft and finer
Today Merino wool achieves incredibly high standards of fineness and softness, making it the most comfortable and performing fibre for sportswear, including next to skin garments.
Merino wool is naturally elastic, thanks to its unique structure: at microscopic levels, Merino fibres are like coiled springs, returning to their original state when pressure is released and maintaining the garment’s design and quality throughout time.
UV Protection and fire resistance
Wool offers a natural protection from Ultraviolet radiation is fire resistant, flame retardant and stores less static in comparison to other fibres.
No synthetic fibre can guarantee the same benefits and comfort, especially during sports, when the human body demands the maximum in terms of safety and health.
From ski to sailing, Merino wool is the right answer to the requests of the most demanding athletes and sports players. It is also suitable to different styles and types of sporty garments, from next to skin clothes, guaranteeing the maximum comfort and safety, to the most performing outerwear, designed for extreme sports and able to face special climate conditions.
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