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Warm natural fibre cardi/jumper/wraps that aren't wool

(20 Posts)
FruitBasedDrinkForALady Tue 09-Dec-14 21:40:11

So somehow I'm suddenly allergic to wool. I am now sad and cold. Other than swaddling myself in thermals, can anyone suggest some alternatives? I would prefer natural fibres where possible - would silk be good?

Bluestocking Tue 09-Dec-14 21:45:28

Cashmere? Silk is lovely and warm too.

FruitBasedDrinkForALady Tue 09-Dec-14 21:59:09

Unfortunately cashmere is out, it makes me itchy. Do you have any idea what percentage silk I'd need in a blend? I have found some nice pieces on Woolovers which are 30% silk, 70% cotton.

frankietwospots Tue 09-Dec-14 22:27:56

100% cotton? I got a lovely slouchy grey jumper from Top Shop today that is 100% cotton (chunky knit, £34) but annoyingly it isn't online.

Bluestocking Tue 09-Dec-14 22:31:26

I don't think 30% silk, 70% cotton would be all that warm, but I'm no expert - I count myself fortunate to be able to wear wool next to the skin! Might be worth looking at Patra Silk?

FruitBasedDrinkForALady Tue 09-Dec-14 22:58:59

Frankie, I'm the coldest creature I know so unfortunately cotton just isn't warm enough in winter. Bluestocking thanks, I'll have a look at the Patra website. I don't know what's happened to me to cause this reaction - merino and cashmere are making me really itchy and lambswool is making me short of breath as well.

RaisingSteam Tue 09-Dec-14 23:22:55

You can get knitwear in bamboo, otherwise it really might be acrylic. There are some high quality cotton/microfibre yarns that have a warm feeling.

I have one of those silk/cotton cardigans, it is very fine and summery. Do you think you're allergic to alpaca - comes from a different animal.

RaisingSteam Tue 09-Dec-14 23:25:40

Oh and hemp you can get grungy knitwear they sell at festivals! You'd have to layer up to be warm.

RaisingSteam Tue 09-Dec-14 23:27:38

this - hemp and cotton?

RojaGato Tue 09-Dec-14 23:39:45

Could be a lanolin reaction maybe? But do you use a special detergent or softener for woollens (e.g. woolite) so it could be that?

I would say your best bet is three thin layers of cotton or silk. Anything with a pointelle knit would be a good layer (especially next to the skin as it will trap extra air), which is why layers and duvets work.

Another option would be some kind of down filled gilet or similar- not an outside coat but something you can pop on inside.

FruitBasedDrinkForALady Wed 10-Dec-14 00:30:29

RaisingSteam, I hadn't thought of hemp or bamboo. That cardi you linked to is lovely, I'll take a look at more there. I don't think I've ever worn angora, so it's worth investigating.

Roja, I'm not sure about the lanolin to be honest. I only noticed the tightness in my chest last week with a new jumper, but it only had 10% wool, so I didn't think much of it. Then last night I wore my new merino base layer when I was running and it was really uncomfortable. Today I was working at home and freezing, so I wrapped myself up in a big pure lambs wool shawl I've had for years, and after about an hour I was itchy everywhere and feeling it in my chest.

I think I might end up with a couple of silk tshirts and see what I can layer over them. Apparently I'm very high maintenance, because I'm also allergic to all feathers and down much to the annoyance of housekeeping in a very fancy hotel which prided themselves on their hypoallergenic feather pillows

RojaGato Wed 10-Dec-14 02:40:39

If you are suddenly reacting to things that you are usually fine with, it could be systemic inflammation/histamine intolerance. If you start reacting to foods to, it could be worth looking into it.

I went through a period a couple of years ago of reacting to lots of things (foods, cosmetics, fabrics, insect bites) that I had previously been fine with. I'd had a very stressful period (bereavement, house move, job change) followed by an infection and both long term and high dose antibiotics. Has taken a couple of years of finding and eliminating my triggers and reducing my stress to get to a point that I don't break out/get ill/have stomach pains at the slightest thing.

maybemyrtle Wed 10-Dec-14 14:24:36

Alpaca if you can tolerate it and yes to silk layers. Otherwise I'm coming back round to thinking that maybe acrylic isn't the devil's work after all (warm, washes easily, moths don't eat it).

FruitBasedDrinkForALady Wed 10-Dec-14 22:55:20

Thanks for the suggestions. And now that I've reread it, alpaca is not angora! (Sorry Raising!)

Roja, I have noticed my oral allergy syndrome flaring up more often (and now, thanks to a post a while back, I have a name for it) so I'll keep an eye on what's going on with my body overall. Sounds like you went through a horrible time, I hope it's all settled down for you now.

Maybemyrtle, I think you might be right and I'll be going back to my poverty stricken student style and M&S cashmillion. If it sounds like half cashmere and half millionaire, it must be good, right?

Anyway, I've ordered a couple of silk sleeveless tops to keep me going and I'll layer what I can on top. Thanks again!

RojaGato Thu 11-Dec-14 00:43:40

It's a lot better now thanks!

Histamine intolerance was explained to me like this. Your body has a capacity to tolerate histamine. It's like a bucket- when the bucket is empty you can come into contact with something and be fine. If the bucket is nearly full or full due to previous reactions (e.g. your OAS), you can come into contact with something you were fine with before and suddenly you have a reaction to a thing you were fine with before. So sometimes it's not just the thing that it seems like you are reacting to that causes the problem, it's something else in your environment that is using up all your capacity to handle histamine.


Passthecake30 Thu 11-Dec-14 06:48:24

I've never been able to wear wool, cashmere or angora, I manage to not freeze. ...but for me it's acrylic jumpers and thick cotton hoodys, and long tops underneath.

SoMuchForSubtlety Thu 11-Dec-14 07:19:24

Uniqlo heat tech for layering is amazing for staying warm.

SoMuchForSubtlety Thu 11-Dec-14 07:22:15

Roja that makes so much sense re histamine tolerance. If I have my environment under control (low allergy bedding, vacuum under the bed often, keep mould and dust mites under control with the dehumidifier etc) then I don't need to take antihistamines and I don't get asthma. But if I'm around one of my really bad triggers (cats for example) then everything sets me off for a while until I can get things under management again. Even the ink on the free newspapers on the tube makes me sneeze then!

Eliza22 Thu 11-Dec-14 07:39:53

RojaGota thanks for the histamine explanation.....I didn't know that and "suddenly" reacted badly (anaphylaxis) to a drug I'd been on for many years. I ended up on steroids and carrying an adrenaline pen around with me, as I'd "puff up" with no warning.

I suffer with the "no wool" thing so, am watching smile

Orangeanddemons Thu 11-Dec-14 07:42:27

Fleece? I can't wear it, but it's warm.

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