DAY 2 Qualities of the wool and trend books

[Posted by Charlotte, Madeleine, Michala]

Our Tuesday programme consisted from 2 parts:
  1.  “Discovery of wools of Europe” with Marie-Thérèse Chaupin 
  2. “Trend books and creation of this blog” with Jeanne Goutelle

Part 1  Discovery of wools of Europe with Marie-Thérèse Chaupin

Propreties of wool

At the beginning of the day, we shared a moment with Marie-Thérese. We have discovered and a comparison between different wools and there properties. We have seen which material is better for a product/fabric, you can see some pictures and samples. And finally, we saw the material characteristics, textures and properties and how they work in a final product or fabric. For example, the Mérinos d´Arles (France) can make “Balls of Knitting yarn” (carding, spinning and twisting), “Knitwear samples” (combing, spinning, knitting, finishing), “Felted stole” (carding, hand felting), also “Woven Scarf “(combing, spinning, weaving, finish) and finally “Top” (combing).

The qualities of the wool fibres: resilience, fire-resistance, absorption of humidity, sound absorbing
We discussed the following themes:
  • Some objects made in wool: properties, choice of the material, choice of the techniques
  • Wool: a natural and renewable resource – tradition and future
  • From the hand-made to industry through craft: technical break or continuation?

      Chemical composition
    Wool keratin is an animal protein not unlike hair, feathers and horn. Wool is composed of five chemical elements in the following approximate percentages : carbon (50%), hydrogen (7%), oxygen
    (21%) and sulphur (3-4%) It could be separated in about twenty amino acids: two are important: cystin and glutamic acid.Wool is rich in the sulphur-containing cystine which gives elasticity. The glutamic acid explains the strong ability of wool for dyeing.
    Physical properties
    The crimp
    The crimp or wave of wool fibre varies with the average fineness (about 30 waves/inch for fine 
    merino). It is related to the period of rotation or twist of the major axis of the ellipse as the fibre issues from the follicle.
    Thermal insulation
    The crimp of the fibre helps to keep a large quantity of air between the fibres which creates a good thermal insulation limiting the transfer of heat. The scales making a rough surface limit the air movement too.Wool is a good protection against the cold as well as against the heat.
    Sound proofing
    Wool has the capacity to dampen or absorb both high and low frequency sound.
    of the fibre: specific gravity of 1.3 
    Resilience and springiness related to its elasticity.It can be extended as much as 30% for short periods without permanent deformation, a factor which is important in its use for higher grade clothing.
    Water and vapour absorption
    Wool is hydrophobic towards water and hydrophilic towards water vapour. The scales and the grease act as screen against liquid water, as against a dewdrop on a woollen knitwear. Only the nano (very small) water volumes can easily come through the scales and arrive inside of the cortex.Wool has the natural ability to absorb up to 30% of its own weight in moisture .While the core of the fibre is capable of absorbing up to 30% of its dry weight in moisture, the surface or fibres has a waxy coating that repels liquids. This surface layer is not easily removed by washing or processing. Water droplets on the surface of the cloth will bead and roll off instead of being absorbed into the fabric.
    No static electricity. Easy care
    Due to its ability of absorbing vapour, wool is little conductive.With no static electricity, wool does not attract dust. Stains are easy to remove as they are not quickly entering in the fabric.Wool is an easy care material, quick drying.
    Odour reduction
    Wool absorbs moisture, reducing sweat on the body, this in turn reduces the amount of resulting body odour, cause by sweat and its contact with any bacteria on the skin.
    A surprising property
    The absorption of water vapour by wool is accompanied by an important release of heat (about 650 calories per gram of absorbed water).The perspiration is absorbed by the wool fabric and the release of heat keeps the skin hot.
    Natural flame resistant
    Several factors in this structure are also responsible for wool's natural flame resistance. Specifically, compared with other common fibres, wool: has high ignition temperature (570 - 600 °C), has high limiting oxygen index (25 -26% ), has low heat of combustion and low heat release,has high nitrogen content (14%), has high moisture content, does not melt or drip, and forms a self-insulating char that prevents further flame spread.While most textile fibres are polymers containing mainly carbon and hydrogen that can burn easily, wool also contains high levels of nitrogen and sulphur. The concentration of oxygen required to support combustion of wool is higher than the ambient oxygen in air (21%). Therefore it is difficult to ignite wool, but once ignited, the flame spreads slowly and it is easy to extinguish.Wool produces less smoke and no toxic gases
    Cleaning air
    Wool’s complex cell structure provides a natural chemistry that will clean the air and keep it purified, especially concerning the adsorption of formaldehyde and others Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)
    The overlapping scales of the cuticle towards the outer tip of the fibre and they are an important factor in processing the felting. 
    The natural colour of wool varies from white through gray, fawn, yellow and brown to black.
    The shape, the dimensions of the scales and the fact that they can be more or less jutting, determine the lustre or shine of the fibre.Merino fibres with jutting scales are dull.The angora goat fibres with less jutting scales look smooth and shiny. 
    Natural resource, biodegradable and environment friendly
    Wool grows on the back of the sheep all along the year.After shearing, it grows again.The wool textiles could be easily recycled.When it is no more useful the wool could slowly rotted and use as fertilizer of the soils.

     Part 2 Trend books and blog creation with Jeanne Goutelle

Jeanne Goutelle a colour, surface and material designer shared her global vision of interior design trends with us, talking about trendbooks, the presentation of a creative process between inspiration, creativity and design. She is working as a trend forecaster and showed us her trend researches process.

Forecasters starts with gathering a broad range of information to understand and analyse trends. They look at sociology, marketing, retail data; avant-gardists, street fashion to establish a map of what going on now in our societies. They are then trying to understand this information and understand what do they tell us. It’s now time to name them and regroup them onto a key-word or key-trend.
The main ability of a trend forecaster is to link an idea, words with colours and materials. They shape ideas to become attractive, practical and communicate them with visual elements. Those trends are used by companies for branding and visual communication or to coherent line of products.
In the second part of the presentation we have talked about the blog - which goal is to create a shared digital note book for all or us to collect information, inspirational photographs, drawings, materials, samples and new concepts.

Brainstorming / project design

At the end of the day 2 of the Master Class, the whole group has participated in discussion on association of crafts and design driven from 5 basic keywords that were defined by Jeanne Goutelle and Diana Brennan (1) Connection/Disconnection, (2) Protection/ Insulation, (3) Elementary design, (4) Balance, (5) Assembling.  – The young professionals in crafts and design were asked to design 5 projects under the 5 announced themes. Based on individual interests, all participants were divided into 5 groups and to work on the projects inspired by techniques and workshops of the master class.

Elementary design
Protection/ Insulation