Initially, when many people think about wool upholstery fabric, their minds drift towards classic checks or tartan collections with a nostalgic flavour but with modern innovations wool upholstery fabric is now available in countless textures, patterns, and designs. The Linwood ‘wool’ archive offers a unparalleled selection, from subtle semi-plains to rich plain-woven fabrics in jewel-like shades. So, we feel confident that there is a wool furnishing fabric that’s right for your home. The common thread: each design will add interesting texture and a feeling of comfort and warmth to any scheme. Join us as we explore the benefits and share the many new ways of styling wool…
The pros and cons of using wool upholstery fabrics
Chat to any upholsterer and they will extoll the benefits of wool upholstery fabric. It’s recognised within the interiors world as covering beautifully, which makes it easy to work with, especially on more intricate pieces such as this classic chair; just look at how the fabric perfectly wraps around the arms – tailored and very smart. Furthermore, wool fabric doesn’t fray or crease and is durable and hardwearing, making it ideal for all upholstery. The cons? Really not many… like many fabrics it needs to be dry cleaned and some wool fabrics – but certainly not all – can feel a little rough, if you are used to softer fabrics such as velvets.
Why choose wool?
Its sustainable credentials are hard to beat. Sheep re-grow their fleeces every year, so they can be shorn every 9-12 months, which means that wool is readily available and, more importantly, renewable. Wool is water-repellent and naturally fire retardant as it contains high levels of nitrogen and water, so it doesn’t need to be treated with harmful chemicals – saving time, money and reducing its environmental impact. And if you ever tire of wool upholstery – which we’re sure you won’t – you can relax in the knowledge that wool will decompose in the soil, releasing valuable nutrients.
Always opt for timeless
Certain looks are not influenced by the vagaries of fashion, neutrals being one of them. This armchair is upholstered in a casual windowpane check made from pure Shetland wool and looks rather fetching positioned in front of this panelling. Another interesting option that captures this mood is Bressay – a simple tonal stripe – which provides a clean, timeless feel. It’s worth noting that neutral fabrics can easily be dressed up with accessories if you do fall for a new cushion or throw.
Mix up your textures
Wool offers such versatility. It can be woven into heavy-weight fabrics with rich textures but can also be lightweight and smooth. For an appealing, layered look consider mixing wools with different finishes. This sofa is covered in a flexed yarn to introduce an interesting texture to the stripe. The curtains – yes, wool drapes beautifully for curtains, and is ideal for drafty rooms – is made from a smoother printed wool with a classic motif. Two different styles but tonally from the same family, so feels cohesive.
Add a pop of colour
A simple pop of colour can make a real statement in a neutral interior, as seen here with this armchair covered in chenille wool in Tangerine. It’s a great way to refresh a scheme without having to completely redecorate, so play around with bright colours and fun hues. Our best-selling Lana collection is a good starting point as it features 55 colours, including Fuchsia, Peacock, and Canary.
Start with soft pinks
Soft pinks – Candy, Bubblegum and Blush to name just a few – have been growing in popularity, becoming the new neutrals for many interior designers. By nature, feminine in feel, but mixed with other shades it can feel timeless. We love pink and white for a fresh look as shown to perfection with this semi-plain woollen fabric from our Westray range set against washed boards. For drama combine indigo and pink or silver or pink for glamour.
For natural beauty, wool is unbeatable. Covering a spectrum of styles from Country House to contemporary and a multitude of uses, we feel it has earnt its place in every home.
Later this year, we'll also be adding to our archive, so please look out for even more British upholstery fabrics made from pure wool.