Much of our lives at Montana Wool Co and Montana Sheep Co center around wool. We are in love with wool. Wool is not hair. Wool is wool. It is its own unique natural fiber like cotton or silk. Montana Sheep Co. wool is about a quarter in diameter of a human hair! It is measured in microns (metric). A human hair is about 70-90 microns. MSC wool is about 21 microns.
Two of us (Brent and Ben) are professional sheep shearers. To be professional means you have studied extensively under master shearers, shorn at least 10,000 sheep, and have a high regard for the sheep themselves and the standards of the profession. It is hard work. It takes a lot of time and patience to develop the skill. Sheep are shorn annually much like we receive a haircut. Shearing does not result in harm to the sheep or termination of its life.
MSC sheep are shorn in the spring prior to lambing. It is important for the health of the ewe and her newborn lambs. A shorn ewe stays cleaner and dryer. It also prevents her from laying on her lambs because she can feel them. It helps her to be a good mama.
At shearing, Montana Sheep Co. wool is sorted into 3 groups or lines – Blanket, Line 1 and Line 2. The wool reserved for Montana Wool blankets is the best and at least 21.5 microns, 3 inches long (80 mm), and has a comfort factor of 98.5%. Comfort factor is important when considering natural fibers and the next-to-skin feel of them. Industry standards say it is necessary to have a comfort factor of 96% to be worn next to the skin. In choosing wool for our blankets, MWC standard is a little higher at 98.5%. It is soft and feels great to the touch.
Industry standards say it is necessary to have a comfort factor of 96% to be worn next to the skin. In choosing wool for our blankets, MWC standard is a little higher at 98.5%.
Because of tremendous advances in technology identifying and developing lines of sheep that produce fine soft wool, it is not necessary to endure itchy wool products to have all the benefits of wool – warm in the winter, cool in the summer, insulating even when it’s wet, antimicrobic, UV – fire – and stain resistant, odor repelling, strong, biodegradable, renewable, and a carbon sink. So, when you buy a wool blanket or garment, think about Comfort Factor. If it feels soft against your wrist or neck, it has a comfort factor of at least 96%. Wool has come a long way. Expect the best.