New Wool Selection

The latest blends changing sportswear

"Comfortable, good moisture management and odour resistant - it is perhaps a surprise that wool has not made the transition into sportswear sooner." Henri Tai

Words by Samuel Bakowski
Photography by Studio Studio

As the lines separating high-fashion and sportswear continue to blur with each passing season, we reveal the key new pieces from FW16 that implement tailoring and an ancient fabric more commonly associated outside the sportswear sphere.

Wool, a fabric that has been used in the construction of clothes for millennia, is the latest material to make the cross-over into performance-led sportswear. Given its inherent qualities - comfortable, good moisture management and odour resistant - it is perhaps a surprise that wool has not made the transition into sportswear sooner.

This new momentum of wool being fused into sportswear shows little sign of abating. A whole raft of brands are now launching wool-rich products into performance apparel. Within this competitive landscape, the competition to differentiate new products from that of the pack is fierce. This desire for innovation is placing a renewed focus on the role of wool spinners, who are enjoying something of a renaissance within these tides of change.

The role of fabric technologists, increasingly apparent in the evolution of sportswear-inspired menswear to its current apex, has never been more integral to the development of a brand. Hybrid textiles that twin the qualities of wool with that of nylon or polyester synthetics increase wool’s durability and aide its moisture-wicking properties. These new innovations continue to widen wool’s application in sportswear.

From lining boots, adding sleek tailored detailing, to reversing the fusion by adding high-tech synthetics over a predominantly wool hybrid construction, sportswear brands are utilising this age-old fabric in a variety of innovative ways. This constant drive for innovation within sportswear is changing the way it is designed and manufactured, and with a willing audience in the previously off-limit, elitist world of high-fashion now sitting up and taking notice, it can be of little surprise that the quality and quantity of what is on offer continues to evolve.

The role of fabric technologists, increasingly apparent in the evolution of sportswear-inspired menswear to its current apex, has never been more integral to the development of a brand.

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