Sheep for Your Feet
#42 /18 Absolutely Fabulous in Your Home written Oct 3, 2018
Sheep for Your Feet
The transition from late summer to autumn is marked in my house with slippers. All summer the slippers sit neglected on the shoe rack in the back hall. The first evening I come home from work with cold toes (I’m reluctant to give up sandals until the snow flies); the slippers are greeted like old friends. I slip them on and sigh with happiness. I love my sheepskin buddies.
We have carried the Garneau Company’s soft, comfortable sheepskin slippers for a decade or more. These slippers are a tried and true Canadian product. Francois Garneau was only 23 years old when he started to design and manufacture slippers in 1977. I first wrote about these wonderful slippers in November 2016. From day one, Francois determined his slippers would only be made from the finest sheepskin he could source and that meant buying from New Zealand and Australia. The sheepskin he imports balances the need for durability with lightness and comfort. Why use sheepskin for slippers?
Sheepskin is successfully used to reduce the chances of pressure spots or bedsores for anyone unfortunate enough to have to sit or lie down for extended periods. Sheepskin works because the natural wool fibers are dense, springy and soft, wicking moisture away from the skin while still supporting weight. The kinky fibers trap and release air for good circulation. Another benefit is the natural anti-bacterial properties of wool.
Sheepskin works the same way for your feet. Natural wicking of the wool keeps your feet comfy, particularly if you wear them without socks. The wool softly molds to the shape of your foot for a fabulous fit. The insulating properties keep feet at the right temperature as air can still circulate in the fluff. Wool is tough so it takes a long time to wear out these slippers. (Mine last about 4 years and I wear them constantly from late September to June.)
Francois’s daughter, Noémi, says she “was born with slippers on” and is now the President of Garneau & Company. Under her guidance, and with a head for numbers and an eye for art, the slippers are still handmade with real sheepskin and leather in a small factory in Quebec. There are new colours and styles introduced on a regular basis.
Our most popular slippers are the slip-on and the low boot. Both are available in a wide variety of trendy and classic colours. The low boot has the advantage of a removable (and replaceable) wool insert. While the Garneau folks recommend hand washing, both Betty Jean and I have machine washed our slippers and are pleased with the results. I suggest a mild detergent and washing them with towels for some scrubability, then mostly cool machine drying with an air-dry finish.
The best way to enjoy a cozy winter is with warm feet. Pre-booking for Christmas slippers is available until November 15. Come in for a fitting and see why our feet are so happy.
Did you know? Australian and New Zealand sheep produce nearly 10 pounds of wool per sheep. The US gets about 7 ½ pounds per sheep.
Owns it, lives it, loves it
- Catherine Reid