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An Everyday Sweater In San Francisco’s Multiple Microclimates

Discovering why yak wool is the perfect sustainable choice for adventures in San Francisco.
May 9, 2024
By Nicole Findlay

One Sweater For Many Climates

Welcome to the second part of my 3-part blog series highlighting sustainable fashion over fast fashion.

In this blog, I showcased how my yak wool sweater survived the unpredictable weather, or as I call them, “microclimates” of San Francisco. Its softness and breathability allowed me to explore the city without breaking a sweat.

Tag along with me and discover how this sweater is the perfect sustainable clothing choice for your next adventure.


I was born and raised in the Bay Area. San Francisco is one of my favorite cities, and while no city is perfect, living here for the last 12 years has been a true privilege.

However, while my favorite city is one of the most beautiful in the world, it doesn’t always have the best weather. And one can only wear so many layers!

A few days into my 7 Day Sweater Challenge, I realized my Oliver Charles cardigan was the perfect solution. It’s super breathable and also warm when you need it. It's comfortable but stylish. This is because it's made of khullu (yak wool), the lightweight material is a game-changer for San Francisco's ever-changing weather. Plus, it elegantly shifts from a morning exploring to an evening downtown.

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Khullu Is The Perfect Choice For Cold Weather Climates

As I mentioned, San Francisco’s weather can be unpredictable. Dressing for the temperature can be tricky, from chilly mornings to sunny afternoons and evenings full of fog. One particularly brisk morning during my 7 Day Challenge, I wandered over to Crissy Field to soak up the views of the Golden Gate Bridge.

I stopped for a coffee at the Warming Hut and checked out Fort Point, a Civil War fort tucked under the southern side of the Golden Gate Bridge. While the coffee definitely did its part to warm me up on a cold day, my Oliver Charles sweater really left a lasting impression. The soft khullu left me feeling warm, comfortable, and cozy while exploring one of my favorite city corners.

My Oliver Charles sweater is also comfortable enough to climb wooden structures with my son at the playground at Presidio Tunnel Tops!

Why are Oliver Charles khullu sweaters so versatile, you might ask?

Yaks live at high elevations. In fact, They are the highest-dwelling mammals in the world. They endure a wide range of temperatures, including extreme cold and heat. Thus, khullu has temper-regulating properties.

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Warmth And Breathability: An Important Combination For Exploring Any City

Despite its many steep hills, San Francisco is a walkable city. One of my favorite hills to climb is the Filbert Street Steps, which is exactly where I went one afternoon wearing my Oliver Charles sweater. The narrow stairway consists of about 600 steps. As you wander through lush gardens, enjoy the stunning views of the bay as you climb closer to Coit Tower. My legs burned in a good way as I reached the top, and I definitely felt warm, but the breathability of my Oliver Charles sweater left me still feeling fresh.

Fortunately, khullu has odor-resistant properties, which is ideal for a sweater, especially in San Francisco, and especially when planning to do a lot of walking.

In fact, unwashed khullu sweaters have 66% less odor intensity than plastic-based fibers and 28% less than cotton fabrics. Oliver Charles sweaters are antimicrobial and moisture-wicking, which moves moisture away from the skin 17% faster than pure Merino wool.

After reaching the top of the Filbert Street Steps, I quickly admired the iconic Coit Tower, the 210-foot thin white column overlooking the bay. I wandered through North Beach, a cool neighborhood steeped in Italian heritage, popped into City Lights Bookstore to peruse the reading material, and then headed to Hayes Valley to meet my husband for dinner.

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Wearing My Sustainable Sweater While Exploring The City.jpg__PID:70f5a7d5-eb1a-4907-b757-cea9f6c0ca27

A Sustainable Sweater That Elegantly Shifts From Day To Night

My Yak wool sweater is versatile to wear day or night. I easily transitioned from afternoon adventures to an evening at Suppenkuche in Hayes Valley. The shift was simple.

I took my hair out of my ponytail, ran my fingers through it several times, and swiped on some red lipstick. I felt ready for a night of pints and Wiener Schnitzel with my husband. Both the food and my Oliver Charles sweater did not disappoint. After my busy day drew close, I felt warm, comfortable, and confident.

As an avid sweater wearer, I can say with confidence all wool is not created equal. My soft, breathable Oliver Charles sweater was perfect for visiting Crissy Field, hiking up the Filbert Street Steps, and a night on the town.

It’s warm enough to face Karl the Fog yet breathable to avoid overheating while climbing. Soft and stylish: this versatile sweater is the perfect staple for San Francisco weather.

Nicole Findlay is a freelance writer based in San Francisco with published pieces in Explore, The Travel, Wealth of Geeks, Mommy Poppins, Tinybeans, Game of Nerds, Medium, and more. She loves travel, fashion, and learning more about how to make this world a better place.

If you believe that every good wardrobe starts with owning less and owning better, consider buying yourself an OLIVER CHARLES sweater.
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