Ella's Wool Blog
I love spring. Warmer weather, beautiful flowers, new shoes, longer days... I particularly love the change that takes place in our closet. Out with the warm and comforting clothes and in with the colorful and fun. Since I’m mostly wearing darker colors in the winter months, the change is not only about texture, but also visual.
The woolen skirt, dresses and chunky knit sweaters will go in the boxes, together with my continuously growing collection of cardigans. 7 black cardigans? Really? It’s one of those things that is really hard to explain to a husband, but that a girlfriend understands immediately :-) Also, woolen thermal underwear will hopefully not be needed for many months. It feels great suddenly to have so much available space!
When you grow up wearing wool, you continue wearing wool (except for the brief period when you think your parents are living fossils and you have to do the opposite if what they say and do). I can see that very clearly now when it's finally time to switch from winter to summer in our closet: A lot of the typical winter clothes will stay.
Thin merino wool workout clothes are perfect all year around. I am also keeping some of my wool baselayer (yes, it comes in adult sizes too). Wool is great to use during hot weather, I find it works a lot nicer than many of the synthetic clothes out there. Of course I can’t pack all my black cardigans away, so a few will stay together with the colorful ones. Full blast aircon can be even colder than a walk on a glacier, specially when the outdoor temperature is hot and humid, and the best way to keep the dreaded summer cold off is to have a cardigan or scarf in your bag for indoor use.
Oh, did I mention scarves, the most perfect accessory before shoes and handbags? Silk and cotton scarves are all well and fun, but a big, light knit cashmere scarf is a staple for every woman all year around. It’s an investment for sure, but will be your loyal friend for years to come. Perfect when flying, to wrap around sleeping kids in the car, to cover up when that strapless wasn't such a good idea after all - the uses are endless. So a few of my scarves will stay as well. Perfect!
As for the kid’s clothes, I’ll keep everything readily available, except the snowshoes and suit (not even summer in Norway is that bad, knock on wood)! They can sleep in wool pyjamas all summer, especially if you put the ac on. The one on the picture you can see closer here.
I am not taking any chances about their sleep by trying anything else than wool. Compared to cotton, a woolen onesie or top worn during the hot days actually prevents them from getting too sweaty and uncomfortable, since the wool regulates heat so perfectly. No big changes in that closet, except adding a pair of new shoes and a cute dress.
Posted by Vibeke Johansen
Lately I have been thinking about why I love wool so much. Obviously, there are all the benefits like keeping you warm, being soft, easy to care for, makes your baby sleep better and so on. But it’s more. It is so organic, so natural, so clean. It just feels so right!
We started domesticate sheep more than 10 000 years ago. It’s in our instincts to collect what nature gives us and use it for something useful, like dressing our kids. One sheep can be harvested for it’s fleece a number of years, and it’s fibers are hundred percent natural. Not made in laboratories or factories, like so many other textiles. Wool, especially the super soft merino which is so good on our kid’s skin, actually has a lot of benefits they have a hard time recreating.
Not all clothes are good for our skin, and then I am not just talking about old fashion itchy wool. So many textiles are full of harmful dyes, chemicals and toxins, that can not only be bad for our skin, but also our planet. The textile industry is behind a huge part of the world’s polluted waters and rivers, and it’s all fueled by our crazy mass consuming. We want new clothes constantly and we want it cheap. Unfortunately, it comes with a really high price that ultimately our kids will have to pay.
Here are three easy steps to lower that price:
* Buy less, and when you buy, be sure to buy quality clothes that will last. Look for shops that have made conscious choices, and sell eco-friendly, organic and fair trade. All the clothes at Ella's wool is tried and tested, and can be bought with a good conscience.
* Buy second hand. If you buy from charity shops you help both the planet and other people in need. Look for clothes like coats, blazers and suits in wool. With a good dry clean and maybe a small alteration, they can look just like new. Unique to you and at a fraction of the price.
* Wash your clothes only when dirty and when you do, fill up the washing machine. You'll save electricity, water and soap, and your clothes will last longer. Good for our planet and even your wallet! Remember that wool's self cleaning abilities reduces the need to wash the clothes more than necessary.
Posted by Christine Surlien
Oh, no! Nemo has descended on us, and it looks like we're stuck in the blizzard this weekend. (Click here to check out MTA's advisory.)
Since we can't stand the thought of kids not having wool during a snow storm, this one weekend we'll offer free, same-day direct delivery of warm wool clothing to our neighbors in Park Slope.
So, if you live between Flatbush Avenue and 9th Street, between 5th Avenue and Prospect Park West in Brooklyn, use promocode Nemo911, and we'll personally deliver your cozy, warm wool to your door.
Now, Nemo is probably going to try to make it difficult for us to get around, so we can't make any promises about how quickly we'll come, but we'll hustle. And as long as you order by 5pm, we promise to get to you that very same day.
So dress your self and your kids warmly, and prepare to go out and play in the fresh snow.
PS: We wish we could visit you wherever you live, but unfortunately that's not going to be possible. So please don't use the promo code if you live outside that area.
Posted by Christian Nordtomme
Do you want to see Ella's Wool's products in real life? Now you'll get a chance to come see us in person.
From Thursday, February 7 and for one week, we'll be hanging out at our favorite toy store in Brooklyn, Norman & Jules, occupying a corner of the store with our stuff.
If you haven't yet been, Norman & Jules is worth a trip in and of itself. They've got awesome, hand-crafted, classic toys, made from all sustainable materials.
So bring your kids along, and maybe invite some other parents and kids along, and come by Norman & Jules at 158 Seventh Avenue, between Garfield St. and 1st Street in Brooklyn. (The B, Q, F and G trains all stop right on 7th Ave, but it's also a short walk from where the 2 and 3 trains stop at Grand Army Plaza or the R at Union Street.)
PS: The first ten visibly pregnant women to come by get a free onesie from Janus in 100% Merino Wool.
PPS: If you think you might come by, why don't you drop a line in the comments or on our Facebook page telling us when you think you might come, and if there's anythng you are especially curious about? That would certainly help us prepare for this thing, which we've never done before.
Posted by Christian Nordtomme
Kids benefit so much from playing outdoors, keeping them inside is not really doing them a favor. But many parents are afraid of taking the kids outside in the cold weather, fearing they’ll will freeze or catch a cold. Actually, a bigger problem is that the kids get too warm! Parents tend to dress the kids when they are cold themselves, forgetting that kids actually run around and play when outdoors. So they get hot and sweaty, while we clutch our take away coffee and dream about the fire place.
In Norway, kids at daycare and schools are only kept inside if the temperature drops under 14 F. This is possible with proper clothing, starting with the base layer in soft merino wool. Continue with layers to protect against cold wind, rain, snow or mud, whatever the season and elements require. Make sure shoes are big enough to fit thick socks, cold feet are no fun. Finally put on a balaclava, that covers more of the head than a regular hat, or a neck warmer and hat. Mittens on those tiny fingers and you are ready to go out.
Smaller children that don't move that much or fast, need to be checked regularly. Stick your fingers down from the neck and feel if the skin is cool or warm. Also, if the kid gets tired, grumpy and inactive, it might be time to head home. Remember that the nose, ears, fingers and toes have little blood circulation, and are more exposed to frost bite, so keep an eye on these body parts especially. If feet and hands get too cold, warm them up slowly under lukewarm water, or preferably with a parent’s body heat. Place ice cold fingers and toes under your sweater on your stomach or in your arm holes. It’ll warm them up and the physical contact is always good when cold, tired and in pain. Never wrong!Remember: good mom and dads need to dress for success also! Don’t bring the kids inside because you are freezing, wool comes in grown up sizes too!
Kids benefit so much from playing outdoors, keeping them inside is not really doing them a favor.
Posted by Christine Surlien