Exploring the potential of wool as a self supporting material

Wool fibers have generally been a sought after material, but since the rise of the synthetic fibers the quality demand has become quite high. Therefore rendering vast amounts of coarse wool fibers obsolete, because of the volume, this wool has become a waste problem. Packing and shipping this wool to a recycle plant would be a significant cost for sheep farmers. They have resolved this with either burning or burying it in the ground.

By minimizing the waste and finding new other suitable uses which can contribute to giving a value to otherwise worthless wool.

This is a material research project on the self binding properties of the wool fibers, also known as felt or felting. Through testing and exploration, both building on the traditional craft parallel with the untested, newly developed methods. Wool felt is traditionally made flat to make things as fabric for clothes and carpets among much more. The felting process has for as long as I can tell, not been tested to its extremes. The possibility of utilizing wool fibers' ability to both mechanically and molecularly bond to itself is unexplored terrain. The project shows promising results for the possible uses for wool felted pieces for uses in furniture, and could be a good candidate for replacing foam rubber and other structural upholstery components in furniture. Using the developed felting technique in other applications should also be explored further. Due to limited time and resources there is still a lot to be discovered, all the possible applications for the wool are yet to be revealed.

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