It’s been woven or knitted into durable textiles to use in everything from outwear to area rugs for generations

Timeless heritage

Wool is versatile, absorbent, temperature regulating, moisture wicking, and water resistant. This natural fiber’s rich history spans thousands of years, a heritage that lends a timeless quality to clothing, bedding, rugs, and décor made from wool. Explore wool’s benefits, find answers to common questions, and learn helpful tips for washing wool in our buying guide.


What is wool?

Wool is the fine, hair-like fiber that makes up the coat of animals including sheep, goats, and alpaca. Wool fleece is sheared annually from the animal, washed and carded, and then spun into yarn to use in clothing, blankets, bedding, rugs, home décor, and more.


Types of Wool

Garnet Hill wool ranges from conventional sheep’s fleece to the finest eco Merino wool, a premium, super-soft fleece that’s completely renewable and naturally biodegradable.

Eco Merino wool is the finest in the world — and another favorite fiber for Garnet Hill sweaters. It’s harvested from sheep raised lovingly in Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa and produced entirely without the use of toxic chemicals.

Alpaca is a type of wool sheared from alpacas that live in the Peruvian Andes Mountains, where an extreme climate and high elevation result in animals with fine, hollow fleece coats that trap air for extra insulation. The warmest of wool fibers, alpaca fleece can be found in our wraps and scarves.

Merino wool comes from Merino sheep, a breed native to Spain but raised primarily in Australia and New Zealand today. The superfine, shiny wool is one of the softest in the world, and it’s ideal for regulating temperature in hot and cold weather. You’ll find Merino in our comfortable, seasons-spanning sweaters.

Cashmere is made from the fine, downy undercoat of Mongolian cashmere goats. It’s lighter and softer than conventional sheep’s wool, but still offers exceptional warmth for clothing, blankets, and accessories.

Boiled wool is a woven or knit wool fabric that has been compressed through heat, resulting in a rich, closely interlocked felt that’s warm and water repellent. You’ll find boiled wool in our cozy, comfortable slippers and sophisticated coats.


Benefits of Wool

Wool isn’t just for winter: The benefits of this natural fiber span the seasons. From comfort to durability, explore our favorite things about wool.


Wool fibers feature natural kinks and bends that trap air and a hollow core, keeping in the warmth so you stay cozy.

Comfortable Year-Round

Known as an “active” or “living” fiber, wool automatically adjusts to changing temperatures and keeps you from feeling too hot or too cold.

Absorbent and Odor Resistant

Wool is absorbent and moisture-wicking, so it is ideal in wet conditions. Not only does it continue to insulate when wet, wool also dries quickly, moving moisture through the fabric and facilitating evaporation to keep your skin dry — and preventing the building of bacteria that can cause odors.


With proper care and storage, wool can last for generations. Wool’s springy and resilient fibers can bend more than 20,000 times before they break, so wool garments hold their shape well.


Wool yarn can be woven or knit into soft, lightweight fabrics or coarse, heavy ones. It lends itself to use in winter-weather clothing or all-seasons activewear, blankets and bedding, durable and stain-resistant rugs, or home décor like pillow covers.


Wool FAQs

Is wool itchy?

Some people are allergic to wool, which makes the fibers feel itchy. For others, wool feels incredibly soft and cozy, and is perfect for all-seasons use. The finer the wool, the smoother its fibers, and the less likely an adverse reaction.

Is wool warm?

Yes, wool is warm. The fibers feature natural kinks and bends and a hollow core that, when woven together, create pockets that trap air to keep you warm. Different types of wool offer varying levels of warmth, with cashmere and alpaca wool being the warmest.

What is wool good for?

Wool is a versatile, multipurpose fiber, so it’s good for everything from cozy winter coats to durable, stain-resistant rugs to warm-weather accessories and activewear to blankets.

Is wool good for summer?

Lightweight wool clothing and bedding is good for summer. Wool is naturally temperature regulating, so it keeps you cool when the weather is warm. The fiber is also moisture-wicking, meaning it pulls sweat away from your body, moves it through the fabric, and facilitates evaporation.


How To Care for Wool

Wool’s many uses mean there’s not one standard approach to washing or cleaning it. Follow the instructions that came with your product, and consider these general tips:

How to clean wool clothing, bedding & accessories

For the best results when washing wool, always follow the instructions on your product. Most 100% wool garments should be dry cleaned only, but some wool-blend items can be hand- or machinewashed in cold water, and then laid flat to dry. Wool shrinks when exposed to heat, so avoid washing it in hot water or drying it in direct sunlight.

How to clean wool rugs

Vacuum your wool rugs regularly to minimize shedding. Wool is naturally stain resistant, but you should still clean spills immediately by blotting them with a clean sponge or cloth. For larger stains or after extended use, have your wool rugs professionally cleaned.

Wool’s rich history, versatile nature, and cozy comfort have earned the fiber a preferred spot in our lineup of premium natural materials. Whether you choose wool clothing and accessories or bedding and home décor, the heirloom quality and timeless style of your wool products will remain favorites for years to come.


Our fibers & fabrics

Explore the high-quality, responsibly sourced natural fibers and materials we use to make every enduring design special.

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