Up through the end of WWII, Alexander Smith & Sons of Yonkers New York was one of the world’s largest carpet manufacturers, producing up to 26,000 square yards of woven wool carpets per day. Wool, one of nature’s most brilliant products has been used in textile production since 4,000 BC! However, when nylon was introduced during WWII, wool carpets quickly lost their position of supremacy. From that time on, wool carpets have accounted for only a fraction of the carpet market, but they still incite desire for their richness, safety and beauty.
When it comes to hiding soil, wool performs wonderfully. Even when they do get dirty, wool carpets readily return to their natural beauty with most standard commercial cleaning methods. Another key to wool’s success is its ability to retain its beauty for 20 years or more. When constructed well and maintained reasonably, wool will never “ugly out” like nylon or polyester. And, because of its affinity for dyes, you can find some of the deepest and richest colors in wool carpets. Finally, wool is a safe carpet, recognized as non-allergenic and will not burn (wool self-extinguishes).
A down side to wool carpets is the expense. One more caution is that because of its affinity for dyes, wool carpets may also be a bit more susceptible to stain agents like red wine or fruit drinks. Nonetheless, if you have the budget and the ability to protect your carpet from stain agents, wool is a luxurious carpet that will serve you well for many, many years!