Yarn & Fiber


A world-first, introducing the 100% Merino wool boardshort

A world-first, introducing the 100% Merino wool boardshort, certified by The Woolmark Company (c) 2019 Woolmark
Lifestyle brand Outerknown - the brainchild of surf legend Kelly Slater and designer John Moore - has created the world’s first boardshort crafted from 100% Australian Merino wool.

Merino wool is a 100% natural, renewable and biodegradable fibre grown from the simple blend of sunshine, water, grass and air. For the lifestyle of the nomadic surfer that the Outerknown brand was created for, the innovative product truly is from nature, for nature.

“We love collaborating with like-minded brands to push boundaries and charter new territories in sustainable design,” said Kelly Slater, Pro-surfer and Outerknown Co-Founder. “The Woolmark Company’s long-time dedication to authenticity, fibre quality and supply chain excellence naturally aligns with Outerknown’s ethos, and we’re so excited to launch the world’s first Merino wool trunks together.”

Developed with The Woolmark Company, Outerknown’s Woolaroo boardshort is a throwback to the golden age of surfing, when trunks were considered equipment and made from a heavy twill fabric. Now, thanks to innovations in fibre, fabric and manufacturing techniques, a high-performance weather resistant fabric made from 100% Australian Merino wool hits the surf, with a strong environmental mission.

"In our constant quest to push the limits of sustainable design and responsible innovation, we partnered with The Woolmark Company to make the first ever 100% Merino wool boardshort," said Outerknown Creative Director John Moore. “This trunk is for a man with a keen sense of nostalgia, who puts style and soul on the same plain as function and quality. We’ve been wearing the Woolaroo since its early development and it’s soft yet strong and the more you wear them in, the better they look.”

Made entirely out of nature’s original performance fibre, Merino wool’s natural benefits come into their own in the world-first Woolaroo. Naturally breathable and resistant to odour, the Woolaroo is quick-drying and wind resistant for post-surf comfort and the fibre’s natural softness and drape offers freedom to move in the waves and on the sand.

Kelly Slater’s lifestyle brand Outerknown unveils the world’s first 100% Merino wool boardshort, with a strong environmental mission. (c) 2019 Woolmark
Kelly Slater’s lifestyle brand Outerknown unveils the world’s first 100% Merino wool boardshort, with a strong environmental mission. (c) 2019 Woolmark

Using the latest OptimTM spinning techniques, Merino wool fibres are pre-stretched and spun into yarn before being woven to create the fabric used in Outerknown’s Woolaroo. The fabric then super contracts creating a highly compact fabric and the ‘jammed’ weave structure delivers a resilient handle able to withstand surf conditions.

“The Woolaroo perfectly sums up the soul of Merino wool,” says The Woolmark Company Managing Director Stuart McCullough. “Soft on skin but tough enough to handle the elements, wool is not only the world’s oldest fibre but also the most technically advanced, with modern manufacturing techniques making the best even better. The first of its kind in the world, Outerknown’s Woolaroo is redefining the way we wear wool.”

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