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Wool Rugs: Good for the Environment, Good for Your Home

As you think about what qualities you want in the rugs you purchase for your home, be sure to keep the environment in mind and consider wool rugs as a great option.

While most people think of natural fiber rugs as consisting of jute, sisal, bamboo and other plant fibers, it is important to remember that wool is also a natural fiber which comes from sheep. It is the most used and versatile natural animal fiber today.

While wool is produced in many countries of the world, the main countries of wool production are Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina, though the wool from New Zealand is probably the most highly coveted and used extensively in wool rugs such as this hand-hooked Malabar wool rug made of 100 percent New Zealand wool.

Wool Rugs, the Environment and Your Health

While rugs made from plant fibers are without a doubt more beneficial to the environment than those made of synthetic fibers, keep in mind that wool rugs are also made from a natural substance. The fact is that harvesting wool uses significantly less energy than it takes to manufacture fossil-fuel-dependent, man-made synthetics. Wool is also recyclable and biodegradable.

In addition, wool rugs are better for the air in your home and, therefore, your health. Why? Because wool has a naturally occurring high-moisture content, so wool rugs offer natural climate control helping to moderate the humidity level in your home which in turn can contribute to the elimination of mold and allergies. This tendency to retain moisture makes it naturally flame retardant, too. It is difficult to ignite and it never melts.

Wool tends to resist dirt, dust, and static electricity and it is hypo-allergenic. In fact wool is anti-microbial meaning it resists odor-causing bacteria, so wool rugs are a healthier and safer choice for any room in your home especially a child’s room. If you’re looking for something special for your kid’s room, take a look at this hand-tufted soft wool rug from the Princess Kids collection.

When it comes to cleaning your wool rug, regular vacuuming is important to keeping your wool rug looking new. For more in depth cleaning, it is always important to check the care tag. However, you’ll find just a little mild soap and water allows you to keep your wool rug fresh. Keep in mind that wool is naturally elastic and flexible, so handle wet wool – which is more incline to stretch — carefully.

Sheep, Llama, and Goats All Offer Wool

In the world of wool, there are a variety of sources; from sheep and goats to rabbits and llamas. While the primary source for wool rugs is sheep, you can find wonderful wool rugs created from the wool of other animals, too. Wool is distinguished from fur or hair by three qualities: it is crimped, it is elastic and it grows in clusters.

Angora goats produce mohair and originated in the Himalayan Mountains of Turkey. Llamas are native to the Andean mountains of South America and include alpacas and vicunas. Rabbit wool, primarily Angora rabbit wool, is known for its softness and is distinctly different from mohair.

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