The 8th Wonder of the World—Wool ****Updated!

Herd of Sheep along the coast line of Denmark standing in the shade
Sheep standing in shade off the coast of Denmark

Aktiv's philosophy of sustainability begins with one of the most versatile animals aroundsheep! Some people just believe in counting them when you can’t fall asleep. In Scandinavia, and many parts of the world, sheep provide sustenance and clothing. Our amazing makers want you to know that wool is a fantastic fiber. The itchy, scratchy fiber of your grandparent's wool garments has been replaced by the finely spun, perfectly developed fleece of the modern era. Our makers use only mulesing* free sheep, bringing a level of ethics to wool production that is unsurpassed. We think you will appreciate our wool collection as much as we do!

Harvested annually, sheep are typically sheered in the spring. The varieties of sheep out there are almost endless; with Merino sheep being one of the most popular breeds around. Prized for its loft, Merino wool is almost magical. Unlike synthetic fibers which will feel wet after they absorb a paltry 7% of their dry weight, wool can absorb almost 30% of its dry weight before it feels wet, and it can continue to keep you warm, even when wet.

It also wicks away moisture vapor from your skin before you are soaked. If you are hot, the moisture it wicked away will start to evaporate cooling the air between your skin and the fabric. Modern carding, spinning and handling makes the idea of wool as intolerably itchy, a thing of the past. Especially when you are using fine or extra fine Merino wool. 

Sheep are deeply entrenched in human culture and have been domesticated for over 11,000 years. When wool is combined with cotton or silk, the crimped fibers are lengthened, giving a lustrous sheen and making an amazing fiber that much more wonderful. Such as with the Organic Wool & Silk Long Sleeve Shirt, available for men and women, from Northern Playground. Wool shirts for summer are a passion for some and a mystery to others. We are here to tell you that they are the real deal. Our favorites include the Natural & Light T from Odlo, the Smale Wool Tank from Kari Traa and the Merino Crossfire Bike Jerseys by Sweet Protection for men and women. They keep you cool and dry regardless of the heat you are facing.

And of course, it is always a thing of beauty when you realize the long history behind the lovely garment you are wearing.

Sheep with bell in Stryn Sogn og Fjordane Norway

(*Mulesing is when wool-bearing skin from around the bum of the sheep is surgically removed.)

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