During my second day in Australia for the 50th Ermenegildo Zegna Wool Trophy we flew from Sydney to Armidale (New South Wales) to visit a typical Australian farm involved in the production of the super fine wool.
No words can describe the unique experience I had and the amazing time I spent in the “middle of nowhere” but let me say that I totally felt like Charles Ingalls in the “Little House on the Prairie”.
We took I chart flight and then a bus early in the morning to reach Wilson Creek Farm in Armidale where we’ve been welcomed with homemade cookies and tea by a local family of sheep farmers. During the visit we’ve been led through many aspects of this incredible world but the most exciting moment culminated with the sheep shaving. I’ve always figured this operation to be like something violent and cruel but actually it’s not. The sheep in fact looked relaxed and used to this annual routine. The result it’s an incredibile single piece of wool called “vellus”. The best single “vellus” of the year is also prized by Zegna with another award called “Vellus Aureum Trophy” specifically for extremely finer wool.
Consider that superfine merino wool have a diameter < 19,5 micron (1 micron = 1/1000 mm), while wool taking part to the “Vellus Aureum Trophy” must have a diameter < 13,9 micron. The record goes to the 10,0 micron vellus priced in 2010.
We spent the lunch time in another enchanted place that was Petersons vinery in Armidale. Here it’s where I took the super nice pictures with the cutest lambkin ever. I really wanted to bring it home with me but actually I realized that someone would have noticed it on my flight back home.
You can find point of view of the whole experience is up on Zegna.com