The Woolmark Company has introduced the first edition of The Wool Lab Digital, an online platform for its fabric and yarn sourcing guide that was developed in response to the changing needs of today’s market environment.
Coinciding with the 10th anniversary of The Wool Lab, the first iteration of The Wool Lab Digital pays homage to the innovative essence of the sourcing guide. While the structure and functionality of the digital platform have been adapted to the times, the core of The Wool Lab remains the same, offering a guide to the best commercially available wool fabrics and yarns, created in collaboration with the most innovative and quality-oriented spinners, knitters and weavers from across the world.
The Wool Lab Digital will be freely accessible to everyone in a dedicated area of woolmark.com. By registering, users will be able to go through the guide and select the wool fabrics and yarns of interest. Users will immediately receive an email with the details of their chosen swatches along with the contact information of the applicable manufacturers that the user can contact to request samples.
“The Wool Lab is the world’s only collection of curated, innovative yarns, fabrics and processes dedicated to wool and therefore offers an unrivalled and global opportunity for wool textile sourcing,” said Julie Davies, the Woolmark Co.’s general manager for product innovation and education extension. “Extending The Wool Lab into the digital space will enable designers, buyers and sourcing teams to continue to connect with known suppliers and discover new, global suppliers, strengthening supply chain partnerships, which is imperative within our industry.”
The Wool Lab Digital has identified the new market trends and product innovations that are most relevant to the current global situation. While wool demonstrates its natural versatility as a fiber, technical fabric innovations are the central theme of The Wool Lab Digital.
The Wool Lab Digital will present four macro-trends of the new market situation and, for each of them, will suggest those fabric innovations that are most suitable. Two of the macro-trends will be released on the platform in February, with the remaining two to be released in May.
The first is “In Motion,” a theme dedicated to clothing for people who are on the move, whether for work or leisure. Both interpretations, Casual and Active, respond to a new lifestyle and to the need to be able to move independently within the city. It is a new kind of multifunctionality–clothes that are easy to wear and combine with each other, that are sophisticated and comfortable in colorful basics for better visibility without being too stark. Each fabric has a specific function, with an overlaying of light and performing blends.
The second is “Hybrid,” a theme dedicated to hybridization interpreted in a personal and youthful way by the creation of one’s own style that sometimes translates into real self-made clothing. They take shape in two interpretations: Shuffle and Craft, a mix of styles that includes wool in trousers for a fresh and updated streetwear, denim, sportswear, classic jackets and baseball caps, sweatshirts and knitted jackets with 1970s inspiration.
Through these macro-trends, merino wool reaffirms its position as an important ingredient for urban and activewear, as well as leisurewear. Thanks to the fiber’s natural qualities and versatility, innovative manufacturing techniques have been applied to wool for use in high-performance sport garments and the home environment.
The Woolmark Co. is a subsidiary of Australian Wool Innovation, a not-for-profit enterprise owned by more than 60,000 woolgrowers that invests in research, development and marketing along the worldwide supply chain for Australian wool.