Boiled wool is a term given to knitwear that has been pre-shrunk to the extent that it has felted and lost most of the resilience and softness associated with wool. Boiled wool is popular for casualwear because it gives a casual look to garments and an alternative texture. Boiled wool can, however, suffer from pilling, stiffness, and is limited to hand wash or dry-clean-only care claims. The lack of resilience means that garment styling has to be loose fitting rather than next to the skin. Knitwear can look like boiled wool but with the resilience and pilling performance of normal wool. In this innovation, knitwear is made to look like boiled wool but with the resilience and pilling performance of normal wool.
Easy care wool yarns are combined with high-power elastane yarns or untreated wool yarns during knitting so that during finishing the elastane or untreated yarns retract and the knit structure contracts during wet finishing. The garment is knitted 15 to 20% looser than normal so that the retracted garment does not end up too dense after finishing. Several trials are normally needed to determine the optimum stitch length and finishing routine especially if fully fashioned garments are being made. The technique works best in coarse to medium knit gauges i.e. <10gg.
Features & Benefits
- Contemporary boiled wool looks
- Resilience of normal merino knitwear
- Machine washable option possible
- Tighter fitting and fully fashioned garments possible