Summer Spinning!

Kariina1’s Grey Shetland

Summer is a great time to step up your spinning – you may recall our recent post about a unique event happening in our Ravelry group last month called the Tour de Fleece. Our event was inspired by and coincided with the Tour de France cycling race.

We’re amazed at the incredible projects our customers shared with us throughout the event and would like to share a few with you this week!

We’ll begin with the winner of our prize drawing, Kariina1, who spun this Shetland fleece. Shetland are a hardy breed with a soft, insulating undercoat and a coarse yet sturdy outer coat. Their fleece is warm and long-wearing, and depending on where it came from, it can be quite soft – even on par with cashmere!

Helloforest’s Bluefaced Leicester

Bluefaced Leicester is a popular breed amongst spinners, prized not only for its lustrous fiber but its ease in spinnability. Commonly referred to as BFL, this fiber takes dye beautifully, as you can see in Helloforest’s finished skein at left.

Skeller’s Undyed Romney

FarrahW's Targhee

FarrahW’s Targhee

If you’re no stranger to spinning with BFL and looking to expand your horizons, consider giving Romney a try.  BFL and Romney are both considered longwools, a category of sheep breeds that originated in Britain.  Romney fiber is as versatile as the sheep itself, and the finished product is ideal for outerwear.

We’ll round out our spinning survey with a relatively new sheep breed, the Targhee.  These sheep were developed in the early 20th century in the United States and bred to be the “ideal sheep.” What does that mean exactly? They are naturally hornless (often referred to as a “polled” breed) with a white fleece – no brown or black is tolerated within the breed except for small amounts on the face, ears, feet or lower legs.  There are very exacting standards for the fleece itself (which you can read more about here), resulting in animals with uniformly fine, dense fleece that are well-suited to a variety of spinning methods.This is just a sample of many projects our talented customers shared during the Tour de Fleece – click here to view more in our Ravelry group & be inspired!

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team

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