Which Types of Wool Are Used in Handmade Rugs?

Which Types of Wool Are Used in Handmade Rugs?

When you buy artisanal décor, you want to make sure you know its materials and what goes into making it. That's why the artisans at Atacama Home use only pure handspun wools to give you the highest quality rugs available. To help you learn more about what goes into making these rugs so special, we’ll go over the types of wool used in handmade rugs.


One of the most popular types of wool used for artisanal rugs is sheep’s wool. It is typically sheered from the sheep when the animal no longer needs its winter coat. Wool has no nerves and can be very heavy, so sheering the sheep benefits its health. In addition, the wavy texture that gives sheep's wool its distinctive look traps air in the fur, making it great for insulation. People who live in cold climates or high altitudes often use sheep’s wool for blankets. Another perk of this material is that it’s rich in lanolin, making it naturally stain-resistant. This bonus makes sheep’s wool perfect for handmade rugs.


Like sheep's wool, llama wool is also perfect for insulating and creating a naturally soft product. Before getting sheered, llamas go through a thorough cleaning process to remove excess debris. Llamas are not typically sheered down to the skin, but it’s certainly possible. Llamas provide a good amount of wool for spinning. In addition, llama wool comes in 22 natural color variations, so rug makers don’t have to dye the wool to get a beautiful earthy color.


Mohair is one of the most prized natural wools on the market, and for a good reason. Mohair is harvested from Angora goats, with one goat producing up to 17 pounds of wool per year. Like llamas, these goats require an extensive cleaning process, as their hair contains many oils. While this oil makes the wool soft, it can also add too much weight to the hair, putting stress on the goat. Angora goats get frequent cleanings and are typically sheered twice a year.


While we’ve already covered sheep, it would be a shame not to include the very special Merino sheep. This is a group of domestic sheep bred specifically for their genetic inclination to produce wool that is softer than most breeds of sheep. The sheering and weaving processes are the same, but the wool is incredibly different. The fibers are 1/3 the diameter of a strand of human hair, meaning it's so fine that it feels incredibly soft and airy when it brushes against your skin.

Tremendous care, time, and love goes into crafting artisanal rugs. At Atacama Home, you'll always get the highest-quality rugs on the market. We want you to know which types of wool are used in our handmade rugs because you deserve to understand the dedication that goes into the quality of the materials our artisans use.