The Campaign for Wool was begun by the Prince of Wales and has spread to many cities, Madrid being one of them.
I have mixed feelings about the Campaign here in Madrid and you will shortly see why. (Although the rumors that they used acrylic yarn last year are not true.)
First lets watch the video from last year, the English version, and you can see what a great and spectacular show that was put on last year, 2012.
Also here is a link to my bi-lingual post about last year's Campaign.
This years's Campaign was smaller, which I suppose was to be expected. The economy in Spain is not good, and the government seems to be making it worse. There was only 2 educational/showcase spots for the Campaign this year.
But there were sheep in the sidewalk of Serrano in Madrid's most elite shopping district.
Doing what sheep do.
Next to the sheep was an English garden complete with knitted accents.
There were a couple of informative posters here and there. I was very surprised and pleased to see this one detailed 5 different breeds of Spanish sheep. You rarely see something this educational about wool here. However, I think that they must be the 5 most famous breeds of sheep in the country because there is actually at least 52 Spanish breeds. But I suppose that the point of the Campaign is to reach the average person and promote the usefulness of wool, not to reach and educate crafters of wool. (Click to enlarge.)
This next sign was not illustrated (or checked over) by any one that has ever really worked with wool. Still I suppose that the educational spirt was there. (Click to enlarge and see the pictures.)
There were also little informative signs in the garden.
The stroke of genius this year was that someone had the idea to hire male models to walk the sheep around and answer questions while being dressed in wool like a chic shepherd. Last year there were a lot of female models wearing the latest in wool (and little of it). This year's models resemblance to the shepherds of the past combined with the chic "tweed" look of today was perfect. (No they did not know much about wool, but they were super helpful.)
Either more stores participated this year or the route between the two educational spots was well lined, because almost every store you walked by was participating.
Some of the uses of the wool in the displays were...interesting, but maybe that's the fashion world for you.
The great thing about coming out to this shopping district (it is not someplace that I do regularly) was seeing that a lot of the well to do people were wearing a lot of wool already. The tweed look is very in right now, it is avery wool friendly look and I love it.
The store with this type of sign were not selling yarn, much to my disappointment, but the displays were super cute.
The second educational spot, a pop up store, located off of Calle Jorge Juan definitely got high points for presentation.
There were goodies and information packets. Here is where I have mixed feelings about the campaign. I love wool, I love to teach others about wool and the crafts associated to it. I know that for the general public too much information can be a bad thing...
but look at those "wool" samples on the table. They are in cute little boxes with a baby on them. There was NO information on them, save the advertiser's: Woolmark. No fun facts, no information indicating what the fiber is, no reasons for the sample in the first place. Also...it was silk (I did a burn test on both). OK silk is a natural fiber, but that is not the point, is it? Also this type of silk is not a renewable resource, the worm dies in the process. Silk does not promote the use of wool. Also Silk is generally more expensive than wool, why give it out as a sample indicating (by it's presence in the Campaign, not information on the box) it as wool?
There were two kinds of samples and the other was a very soft merino wool (not that you could tell from the boxes). The samples of wool were a nice touch.
But something to make you spinners cringe... the wool samples were cut into lengths. Shudder.
There was an area where people could learn how to knit, and they were knitting with wool. A very good idea. More knitters equals more demand for higher grade wool, and maybe down the road, the demand for breed conservation and the conservation of colored fleeces.
This little girl is an early convert and was singing "Paseo de la lana!" (Avenue of wool is a rough translation) over and over as she walked behind us to the pop-up store.
Do you have mixed feelings about this campaign for wool as well? Or is a little education (even if some of it is misrepresented) better than nothing?