Published October 31, 2017
The Icelandic sheep or ovium frigus is the real national symbol of Iceland. Proud, half-wild, half-domesticated and usually embroiled in some kind of political scandal. It is from this majestic animal that Icelanders make their most sacred of garments the “lopapeysa” or wool sweater.
Recently, the mega outdoor clothing store Icewear Magasín opened up in your favourite tourist town Vík í Mýrdal. It’s bigger than anything else and certainly more interesting than your Laugavegur puffin shop.
The most fascinating part of the complex is the Víkurprjón knitting factory, where you can watch the tail end of a production process that began, like most things, with birth. A lamb is born and together with its mom they head into the highlands where the sheep live from May through to autumn. This annual wilderness living is what has made the Icelandic wool so unique, you need something special to survive this barren and cold rock.
Then, after the annual “réttir” festivities (where people mostly just get drunk on Brennivín), the sheep are sheared and we finally get Icelandic wool. At the Víkurprjón factory you can see how the wool gets turned into the knitting wool “lopi”–the foundation for all your mitten, hat and sweater dreams.
And more …
But at Icewear Magasín you can enjoy more than just the creative process that kept us alive through miseries past. You can enjoy a meal at the Ice Cave restaurant, grab a drink at the café Lava and buy all your Ring Road essentials at the KR-Krónan supermarket. There are also three stores onsite: Icewear, IceMart og Woolhouse.
So don’t be so sheepish, check out Icewear Magasín and fill your suitcases with enough wool stuff for you to look more Icelandic than Icelandic when you return home.