Today I went to Somerset House to visit the Campaign for Wool’s Wool House exhibition. The exhibition showcases everything to do with wool – weaving, crochet and knitting; yarn and fabric; home decor and fashion.
Unfortunately today the real sheep were not in the courtyard, so instead I was greeted by a life-sized crocheted bear. Scary but cuddly at the same time.
There was The Most Comfortable Chair in the World EVER which was fully upholstered in Mongolian Longhaired Sheep fleece. I could have sat there all day, snuggled into the soft yarn, but instead headed off to see the rest of the rooms.
Most of the exhibition was set up as rooms in houses, with as much as possible made from yarn, even the walls! The nursery featured a knitted raindrop mobile, plenty of woolen toys, and feature walls that reminded me of Fuzzy Felt (soft woolen wall hangings/panels with felted trees and leaves for decoration).
The “Modern Room” was full of bright, fun felt that had been cut and folded origami-style to create cushions (the left-over felt was used to make blinds) and sound-absorbing wall panels. There were some lovely green flower cushions, made by cutting slits and folding them to create petals that I am inspired to attempt to recreate.
In contrast to the modern room was the “Natural Room” full of rustic yarns. While not my preferred colour-scheme, this room was cosy and homely and full of little touches like these cute knitted pots.
Unlike some of the more modern rooms, the natural room featured a chair that looked comfy to sit in – it had been totally upholstered in old Aran jumpers. You could clearly see the components of different jumpers and cardigans (the chair back was buttoned up nicely) and there were useful pockets carefully placed on the arms.
As well as all the furniture and interiors there were rooms displaying different styles and types of clothing made from wool – classic Savile Row suits, pure wool scarves, Vivienne Westwood tweed shoes, and tweed cycling gear complete with flashing safety lights. There was even a pair of “jeans” made from wool tweed that looked just like denim!
Did you know that Britain is home to the most species of sheep? Rooms were full of interesting wool facts, along with samples of a huge range of woolen fabrics, yarn and fibres. Apparently wool makes a great mattress as it keeps you warm in winter and cool in summer, however I was more tempted by some fabric that could make a nice jacket….
Pure wool tweed covered with Swarovski crystals! Hmm… maybe not the most realistic choice for a sewing project!
Wool House is open for another week so if you are nearby I would recommend popping in for a quick look and stroke of all the lovely yarns (and a free felt sheep key-ring!). I left the exhibition feeling inspired to spend the rest of the afternoon wrapped up in my wool blanket with my knitting.