Swisswool - Produced by nature

  • Wool Tradition

Wool tradition

At ORTOVOX we have put our trust in wool since 1988. That is more than a quarter of a century of experience in working with the most functional of all natural fibers. Starting from the first layer, right through to the third, we take a holistic approach and do not produce any garments without using sheep’s wool fibers. Our expertise lies in our intelligent combination of natural material and other innovative fabrics. With the resulting system of wear comfort we provide you with unique functionality and wear-comfort properties for your mountain adventures.

We have been working with swisswool in our insulation products since 2011. The special features of wool fibers from Switzerland are their outstanding thermal properties and excellent climate control, as well as their regional origin.

FROM THE SWISS ALPS

Swisswool comes from the harsh mountainous landscape of the Swiss Alps. This provides an almost unlimited habitat and rich, natural food sources for over 400,000 Swiss mountain sheep. From Grisons to the Valais, the animals spend the summer months on the alpine pastures and are only shorn in spring and in fall, in the traditional way - by hand. They spend the cold winter months in the protection of spacious sheds, fed on nutritious dried grass


Sheep People

  • PROXIMITY

    PROXIMITY

    Sheep farmer Ruth loves the wild alpine pastures beneath the Rosenlaui glacier just as much as she loves being near her Valais Blacknose sheep. 

  • PASSION FOR OUTDOORS

    With the help of his sheepdogs, shepherd Stefan Platzer cares for 490 sheep on the Alp Plazèr near S-charl.

    PASSION FOR OUTDOORS
  • NOT MASS-PRODUCED

    NOT MASS-PRODUCED

    Jon Roner, a sheep farmer from Scuol, has been passionate about sheep breeding since 1987 and is well aware of the value of his wool.

    Get to know Jon Roner in this interview:

    Interview
  • PRESERVE TRADITIONS

    Martin Keller, from Buchs, is the founder is the Swisswool initiative. His ideas and application ensure the livelihood of many wool farmers.

    PRESERVE TRADITIONS
  • FUNCTION MEETS DESIGN

    FUNCTION MEETS DESIGN

    Thomas Moe, Head of Mountainwear at ORTOVOX in Taufkirchen, is an enthusiastic wool user and creative head chef in the ORTOVOX product kitchen.


Wool Collection Stations

Swisswool is more than just a supplier for us – it is much more an initiative whose goal is to support regional mountain farming and ensure its survival. In numerous Swiss valleys, more than 2 collection stations have now been set up, where the sheep farmers can deliver the wool from their animals twice a year. In this way, approximately 1000 metric tons of fair-trade wool is collected directly from producers every year.

  • SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Not many years ago, small businesses in Switzerland earned very little or no money with sheep’s wool. Because Swiss second-shearing wool cannot be woven directly, it did not attain competitive prices in global markets. When federal subsidies for the raising of sheep were reduced or completely eliminated, many Swiss sheep farmers were nearly driven out of business. Swisswool is, however, best used as a high quality and natural insulation material. This led to the innovative idea behind swisswool: Stimulation of the regional economy with local collection of wool and fair price for farmers before processing the material into a variety of products. The final results are modern products of regional origin.


Wool - Better than down

  • ODOR NEUTRALIZING

    ODOR NEUTRALIZING

    Nobody wants to smell. With wool, you can get by with just a few items of clothing, even on mountain hikes lasting several days. This is made possible by the protein molecules in the wool fibers which simply destroy odor-forming bacteria. After the tour, you should simply leave your product to air, and you’ll be able to wear it again the next day. Your companions and the environment will thank you for it!

  • TEMPERATURE REGULATING

    Even our grandmothers knew that wool keeps us warm in winter – that’s why we all had those wonderfully itchy woolen jumpers. But keeping us cool in summer? Even our grandmothers wouldn’t have thought of that. The thermo-regulating qualities are based on two principles: On the one hand, wool fibers are highly rippled and provide plenty of space for air in the gaps between them. This air serves as an insulation layer, in both summer and winter, against heat and cold. The insulating layer also makes it possible for merino sheep to survive in the sometimes hot Tasmanian summers. The second principle is based on cooling by evaporative coolness. Wool can absorb more than 35% of its own weight in moisture (without feeling wet to the touch). If the ambient air is warm, the moisture dries faster, resulting in this refreshing evaporative coolness. If our grandmothers had known that, there would have been woolen T-shirts back then, too.

    TEMPERATURE REGULATING
  • EASY TO CARE FOR

    EASY TO CARE FOR

    Even though wool has an inherent odor-neutralizing effect, you might find yourself in a situation where someone squirts ketchup on your product and you need to wash it. This is easier than you might think: Thanks to the addition of the corn-based fiber Ingeo, the material is very stable and easy to care for. You can simply machine wash it at 30° and then leave it to dry on a laundry rack. Just like for most functional clothing, you should nevertheless avoid dry cleaning and dryers.

     

    Washing instructions can be found here.

  • MOISTURE REGULATING

    Wool fibers are hydrophilic fibers – and that’s precisely what makes them extremely functional! They can absorb up to 35% of their own weight in moisture without feeling wet to the touch. The fiber surface remains dry, while the moisture moves to the fiber core. In contrast to down or polyester, wool thus feels warm and comfortable, even when wet. Of course, wool also dries out quickly, too – even keeping you refreshingly cool on hot summer days. And of course, the moisture is also released, providing refreshment in warmer temperatures: warm ambient air leads to a quick drying effect, which provides cooling evaporative coolness. Wool fibers are thus all-rounders that do exactly what you expect from them, whatever the season – they cool you down in summer, and warm you in winter.

    MOISTURE REGULATING

Made in EUROPEAN

Since the distances to the swisswool collection stations are very short, the distance your product needs to travel before it gets to you needs to be equally short. That’s why part of our concept is to keep production entirely in Europe, always utilizing the shortest possible routes of transportation. After collection, the balls of wool make their way to Belgium. This is the only place where there are unique machines which can rid the wool of natural stains using only soap and soda. Next, the wool is given its gentle anti-felting finish. In the German town of Dinkelsbühl, the wool is then mixed with 12% Ingeo – a corn-based bi-component fiber. Next, the wool is opened, carded, cross-laid, and thermally stiffened. The finished lengths of fleece, which are produced in various thicknesses for different uses, are then used at various locations in Europe to make highly functional ORTOVOX insulation products. 


Swisswool Products

279.95 € *
(SW) VEST PIZ GRISCH
SWISSWOOL LIGHT
179.95 € *
(SW) SHORTS PIZ BOÉ
SWISSWOOL LIGHT TEC
169.95 € *
279.95 € *