24 Luxe Wool Blankets: How To Choose The Best Throw
Wool is a staple in everything, from fashion to home decor. Wool fibers are naturally crimped which gives it that signature warm and fuzzy feeling. From merino to mohair, each fiber has a distinct makeup with pros and cons to consider. Natural wool is made from the fleece of animals in a painless shearing process. Some sources are rarer or require more laborious processes than others which is where the hierarchy of cost comes into play. Mohair wool is from an Angora goat while Angora wool hails from the Angora rabbit and their furs vary greatly in gathering, process, feel, and uses, thus, in price point as well. Similarly, a lamb refers only to baby sheep that are one year old or less, so lambswool means the wool was sheared from the lamb before its first year. Also called virgin wool, lambswool is more sought-after and therefore pricier than sheep’s wool, like mohair or merino.
Learn with the must-know details and shop the top-of-the-line designer options, ahead.
Merino is a type of sheep’s wool that comes from the Spanish merino breed of sheep. Though merino wool is one of the most popularly sourced, its rigorous cleaning process increases the cost. Because of the sheep’s natural oils, the sheared wool must be intensely washed. During this stage, it loses about half of its volume, meaning twice as much shorn hair is needed. Merino differs from lambswool since it’s culled from mature sheep. It’s one of the most common and economically convenient fibers there is. Its fibers are ultra-fine and lightweight which gives it a soft, temperature-regulating feel that’s perfect for throw blankets. For a sustainable choice, Woolrich’s blankets are made of a wool-blend using recycled wool. Pendelton blankets are beloved for the use of virgin wool, or young lambswool, blended with cotton.
Mohair is made from the Angora goat—not to be confused with Angora wool, which is from Angora rabbits—and is popular for how durable and shiny it is. The fiber is made mostly of keratin, a protein that makes the hair durable with a natural stretch, and takes dye very well so it’s often colorful or printed. It’s specifically popular in home decor like blankets and pillows because it withstands wrinkling and is naturally fire-resistant making it a great backyard patio option for around the bonfire. Despite its light weight, it’s more durable than finer strands like cashmere and is popular for chunky knit blankets.
Angora wool is made from Angora rabbits. It’s known to be the fluffiest and lightest of the natural fibers. Angora is similar to camel wool in that the fiber is hollow and strong, making it one of the warmest and softest fibers. But because the fur is so delicate, angora requires attentive maintenance and constant grooming since its fine fur is easily matted. Smaller in size compared to a sheep or goat, the rabbits produce less bulk in a longer more time which means it’s more expensive.
Cashmere is considered one of the most luxurious natural fibers not just for its comfort but its scarcity. Cashmere is sourced from cashmere goats that originate from the Kashmir region of India. Only the undercoat is used from the goats and it has to be combed instead of sheared. The longer process often takes several goats to make just one blanket, making true cashmere highly coveted. Never leave home without it thanks to Sara Cashmere’s convenient Portofino travel kit that provides lavish comfort no matter your location.
Alpaca wool is a lustrous fiber that’s soft and lightweight yet durable and warm. The multi-purpose textile is often used for suiting and blankets since it’s breathable and holds its shapes well. The coat of alpacas generally grows in abundance with a thick, fluffy texture. The dense fur stands out amongst the rest because it doesn’t contain lanolin, which is found in sheep’s wool, and is known for its coarse texture that may make a certain sweater itchy or scratchy. Alpaca wool is also versatile, odor-resistant, and even water-repellant.