Wool showcased at “WOOL HOUSE” in London

4 March 2013

The UK enjoyed its biggest celebration of wool as The Campaign for Wool launched WOOL HOUSE from March 13 to 24 in the stunning West Wing of London’s historic Somerset House.

Donna Wilson transformed this space into a bedroom, featuring a woollen bed, rug and wall hangings
Donna Wilson transformed this space into a bedroom, featuring a woollen bed, rug and wall hangings.

WOOL HOUSE presented a vision for wool as a modern, versatile, lifestyle fibre. The exhibition featured a showcase of interiors, fashion and the world of artisan and craft making, along with a hi-tech educational suite.

The event invited leading interior designers to offer their vision and seven individual rooms showed how the design community uses the fibre extensively within their work. Exclusive room sets from Donna Wilson, Ashley Hicks, Josephine Ryan, Anne Kyyro Quinn, Mary Fox Linton of Fox Linton Associates and Kit Kemp featured alongside a huge wool art installation commissioned by the Campaign from the acclaimed Dutch tapestry artist, Claudy Jongstra.

Other features included a unique 100-feet runner designed by Cristian Zuzunaga in association with Brintons which represented international carpet manufacturers and a runner designed and made by Roger Oates. Additionally, rug weaver Jason Collingwood took up a working residence as his studio was recreated in WOOL HOUSE. Collingwood demonstrated how to weave on a table loom, showing the heritage of industry skills to the public.

The entrance of WOOL HOUSE was be styled like a grand country house, with a carpet inspired by a classic marble floor tile pattern and created by Alternative Flooring Bespoke. Unique pieces embellished the house including Shauna Richardson’s unusual ‘crochetdermy’ Bear that has previously been exhibited at the V&A and took pride of place in the entrance of WOOL HOUSE. Andy Warhol-influenced sheep head images were displayed on the walls of the hall.

A series of wool-led designer talks, events and a programme of activities with interactive workshops were held during the course of the event. A special educational and innovation room featured tablets that covered everything from sheep to manufacturing and all types of products.

There was also three rooms dedicated to fashion, including a space showcasing fine woven fabrics and live tailoring, while two others celebrated the importance of wool in the fashion industry.

The Campaign for Wool appointed Arabella McNie as the curator. She has more than 20 years’ experience of working as a stylist and designer in the world of interiors.

Arabella McNie said, “I am determined to show wool as a modern fibre and visitors will see a broad spectrum from ultra-modern and hi-tech to highly luxurious and more traditional. There are some amazing fabrics and flooring and WOOL HOUSE will showcase some stunning room sets which will really show the difference that wool can make and inspire greater use of the fibre”.

Bridgette Kelly, The Campaign for Wool’s project director said, “It is the most expansive venture the Campaign has seen to date as it looks at all the key uses of wool under one roof and shows the amazing versatility of the fibre and its potential to be both stunningly beautiful in use and yet incredibly practical too.”

The Campaign for Wool, whose Patron is HRH The Prince of Wales, is funded by The Woolmark Company, the British Wool Marketing Board, Wool Council of New Zealand and other wool organisations across the world including those in South Africa, South America, Norway and the USA.

More information

Campaign for Wool website