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Beyond the Bale : June 2019
AWI’s marketing arm, The Woolmark Company, in April proudly unveiled the Woolmark logo on 43 new signs installed at the stations of the Gondola Service in the Venetian lagoon, from Grand Canal to San Marco, Venice. For the next four years, the logo – owned by Australian woolgrowers – will be visible to the 85 million people that are expected to visit the city. The promotion follows on and complements the introduction in 2017 of 100% Merino wool uniforms worn by the 433 gondoliers, an initiative of The Woolmark Company together with iconic Venetian brand Emilio Ceccato (owned by Italian retailer Al Duca D’Aosta) and the Association of Venetian Gondoliers. The iconic blue and white striped Merino wool uniform comprises a polo shirt made using 100% Merino wool fabric from Reda Active, a sweater made from 100% Merino wool yarn from Tollegno 1900, and a quilted vest from Tessuti Marzotto Fabrics with 100% Merino wool fabric and 80% wool wadding. An inauguration ceremony of the new Woolmark-branded gondolier stations took place on 9 April, attended by many of the delegates from the Congress of the International Wool Textile Organisation (IWTO) which was held in Venice. Venetian gondoliers wearing their Woolmark-branded 100% Merino wool uniforms, alongside the new 43 stations of the Gondola Service that now also feature the Woolmark logo. The Woolmark logo is displayed on the sleeve of this sweater. Following the reintroduction in 2017 of wool into the uniforms of the iconic Venetian boatmen of Venice after an absence of more than a century, the stations of the Gondola Service are now also displaying the Woolmark logo to the estimated 60,000 tourists that visit Venice every day. WOOL IN VENICE The gondoliers’ job is strenuous and undertaken in all weathers, so they are thankful that their uniforms are now being made from such a performance fibre. Merino wool’s natural, inherent benefits – including thermoregulation and breathability – help ensure maximum comfort and freedom of movement during physical activity. The Woolmark logo is displayed on the outside of the apparel, showing visitors that the uniforms are made from 100% wool. The wool uniform is available to the public to purchase from the three Venice stores of Emilio Ceccato and online at www.emilioceccato.com (shipping worldwide). “We are proud that, after almost a century, the gondoliers have rediscovered wool for their uniforms," said AWI Global Strategy Advisor Fabrizio Servente. “Their job requires a high-level of physical performance in extremely variable weather conditions. The return to Merino wool usage confirms the ability of this natural fibre to respond to their needs; this is why The Woolmark Company wanted to support this project with the historical brand Emilio Ceccato and Association of Venetian Gondoliers.” MORE INFORMATION www.emilioceccato.com MERINO MAGIC OFF FARM 15