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9 best wool blankets to keep you warm this winter

Add an extra layer of comfort and texture to your living space with these merino and chunky knit throws 

Ali Howard
Tuesday 06 October 2020 17:20
We put our selection to the test, looking for a good balance between cosiness and weightiness, eye-catching design, and the very best in traditional craftsmanship
We put our selection to the test, looking for a good balance between cosiness and weightiness, eye-catching design, and the very best in traditional craftsmanship

There’s nothing like a pure wool throw to snuggle up in once the nights draw in. A wholly versatile number, it provides an added textural layer to hang off the arm or back of your sofa, making it a toasty and affordable alternative to reaching for the thermostat.

Larger wool blankets can act as cosy bedspreads, too, and this is where the material really comes into its own: pure wool is naturally breathable, static-resistant, odour-proof and of course, eco-friendly. As a renewable fabric you can sleep soundly knowiing your luxuriously soft lambswool blanket is sustainble.

In testing our top throws we’ve discovered a distinct move away from traditionally autumnal shades. Conversely, this autumn and winter it’s all about bringing bright colours to our living rooms or bedrooms with a wooly accessory that really stands out.

Similarly, we’ve discovered some contemporary weaves that come from surprisingly traditional mills, and we love this marriage of a time-honoured craft with forward-thinking design.

To avoid shrinkage, and to keep your blanket’s shape, washing instructions must be followed to the letter. Some of our woollen throws withstood a gentle machine wash, while others were strictly dry clean only.

We put our selection to the test, looking for a good balance between warmth and weightiness, eye-catching design, and the very best in traditional craftsmanship.

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps to fund journalism across The Independent.

Loom & Last thyme lambswool throw

Size: 140cm x 180cm

Beautifully soft but also reliably weighty, this 100 per cent lambswool throw marries traditional craftsmanship with a contemporary design and colourway. Unlike many pure wool blankets and throws, this one bucks the trend on autumnal hues, and instead offers a spring fresh pop of colour. Here, irregular block stripes range from a bright grassy green and citrusy orange to a soft duck egg blue and warming cream. Take a closer look and you’ll see a delicate herringbone weave, which gives the blanket its subtle, fine woven texture. We loved the long, cream fringing, too. Cosy, modern luxury.

Issy Granger the poet’s throws, the Millay

Size: 140cm x 185cm

Not that we need an excuse to cosy up with a good book in a wingback armchair while draped in a pure wool blanket, but these literary inspired throws are positively inviting us to. Made from 100 per cent pure merino lambswool, they feature a simple, wide-striped design in blue, raspberry or green, and are named, rather charmingly, after poets Lord Byron, Christina Rossetti and Edna St. Vincent Millay respectively. Lightweight yet incredibly warm, and featuring generous fringed detailing, these throws offer a chic and timeless look alongside their obvious cosy appeal.

Johnstons of Elgin geometric merino wool throw, camel

Size: 140cm x 190cm

Woven from 100 per cent extra fine merino wool, this luxury throw is almost impossibly soft – and the moment we laid our hands on it we understood the pricing: its high-end quality is tangible. Yet its super softness is met with sharp geometrics – the generously-sized blanket features overlapping lines and triangles, in a palette of nature-inspired colours from coral to sand to ocean blue. What we loved most about the throw was its ability to be both delicate and lightweight yet wonderfully soft and warm. This one’s seriously snuggly.

Urbanara gotland blanket

Size: 140cm x 220cm

While a wool throw can offer a cosy textural layer to our favourite armchair or living room settee, Urbanara’s offering is large enough – even in the smaller size – to act as a wonderfully woolly bedspread. This tactile number, complete with its twisted fringe detailing, is woven from 100 per cent pure Scandinavian new wool and features a delicate chevron patterning, adding to the visual texture. It’s rare to find a pure wool blanket large enough to cover a king sized bed but this one more than did the job. It’s on the thinner side, but it is soft and warm – ideal if you want to feel toasty without being weighed down. The larger size (220cm x 240cm) costs £129.  

Inchyra Scottish wool throw in cranberry

Size: 150cm x 190cm

Simple, stylish and contemporary, Inchyra’s offering provides a smart textural layer to beds, sofas and armchairs with its fashionable window pane check. Woven in Scotland, this is a substantial pure wool throw, both in materials and dimensions. Snuggle up on the sofa with it and you’ll be toasty in no time. We loved its long twisted tassels and its fruity burst of colour – a cheery pick-me-up on the dreariest of days. This one can be personalised with a hand-stamped name or date, making it an ideal wedding gift for winter nuptials.

Roger Oates Heather Shields throw, nougat

Size: 135cm x 185cm

Our most expensive pick comes from the masters of flat weave, Roger Oates. It may be pricey but it is a beautifully hand-crafted piece that will easily take centre stage in any living room or bedroom set up. The throw, with its intricate geometrics and stripes is timeless in design and boasts a warming colourway in tones of nougat and mariner. It’s woven from pure new wool in a traditional double cloth technique, making it reversible, substantial in weight, and one that holds its shape. We loved the blanket stitched border, which added to its craft-driven appeal.

Heating & Plumbing super fluffy pure new wool blanket

Size: 130cm x 200cm

This is a relatively new brand that playfully mixes traditional craftsmanship with the coolest, contemporary design, which is exactly why we love it. True to form, it’s wool blankets offer a colourful update on conventional designs with a palette of daring combinations that really stand out. This is woven from 100 per cent pure new wool and features a light grey block colour that’s accented with overlapping stripes in the most vibrant canary yellow and ocean fresh turquoise. Cosy, fluffy, warm but lightweight. 

Klippan velvet wool throw, saffron

Size: 130cm x 200cm

As the name suggests, Nordic Nest is a one stop online shop for curated Scandi homewares. In the fold is Swedish brand Klippan Yllefabrik, or Klippan for short. Founded in 1879, it’s a reliable brand of woven textiles, so it’s no surprise this lambswool throw is so soft it boasts the tag “velvet”. It features a lovely bumpy honeycomb patterning, which adds to the arresting texture. Soft and cosy, the throw is available in a range of contemporary shades, including the beautifully vibrant saffron. 

National Trust herringbone block pastel throw

Size: 140cm x 220cm

Made exclusively for the National Trust by Yorkshire weavers, Bronte by Moon, this is another pure merino lambswool throw that manages to be both lightweight and warm. In a subtle and finely-crafted herringbone weave, it features a contemporary block pattern and boasts a delectable colourway: vibrant lime greens and violets merge with pastel pinks and sky blues, all of which are inspired by the shades of the great outdoors. This one looked lovely draped over our vintage leather Chesterfield, adding a colourful slice of the countryside to our city pad.

The verdict: Wool throws and blankets

Loom & Last’s thyme lambswool throw offered a good mix of traditional craftsmanship and modern design. We loved its fresh colourway and fine woven texture, as well as the perfect balance between weight and warmth – this one is both middle weight and middle priced.  We were also won over by the Heating & Plumbing super fluffy pure new wool blanket for its wonderfully soft texture and its chic update on the conventional. 

For more ways to prepare your living space for autumn and winter, read our guide to everything you need to hygge your home, according to interiors experts

IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.

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