Technical terms used in this article:
Grip, slide, cush, bounce, firmness and "to go a wrap". Explanation of the terms can be found at the bottom of the article.
Merino wool is known for its amazing softness and strength. Textile made of merino wool temperature regulating, durable and very comfortable. Merino wool is one of my favorite fibers for slings and wraps. Merino wool provides strength, lightness and cush, and the good balance between grip and glide makes it a pleasure to carry.
After the merino sheep are shorn, the raw merino wool is washed, combed and sorted by fiber length. The longest and finest fibers are used for the thread we use to weave our carrying tools. A thread spun from the finest merino wool is very strong, even and has minimal wool scratches. Our wool is not superwash-treated, where the fibers are covered by a layer of silicone - this preserves the wool's excellent natural temperature-regulating properties.
Going for wool: Wool fibers will shrink easily after the first wash, and stretch with use. This means that a wrap/sling with wool will have relatively much bounce right after the first wash, and then the fibers will be stretched out with use, and the bounce will be reduced. If a wrap has wool in the trend, you will be able to measure a clear difference in length after some use.
Unfortunately, not all merino wool is made equally appropriately. Some merino producers still use a method called mulesing. Mulesing is a very painful procedure that involves removing strips of skin from the lamb's hindquarters. When the treated area heals, the area will be covered with scar tissue. The purpose is to reduce the risk of a parasite attack called flystrike.
We only buy merino from producers who use other methods to protect their sheep (such as washing, selective breeding and trimming). In addition, our merino is from sheep that have been free-range where they have been able to eat grass and herbs, and only brought in for shearing once a year.
Grip: How well a wrap "sticks" to itself. Grip ensures that a wrap stays in place and does not slide up. However, too much grip can make it challenging to tie tightly enough.
Slide: The opposite of grip. How well a wrap slides over itself. Too much slip can make it challenging to get a binding to stay in place.
Cush: How "pillowy" a wrap/sling is on the shoulder.
Bounce: How elastic a wrap/sling behaves. The opposite of firmness.
To go a wrap/sling to: How the fabric changes with use. A used wrap/sling is often softer and easier to use than a brand new one. It depends to a large extent on the materials how much work is required before a wrap is complete.