This year we are excited to be introducing a limited run of our very own range of Mudchute Wool, made from our the fleeces of our own flock of native and rare breed sheep, reared and sheared right here on the Isle of Dogs!
Following our 2013 Shearing Day back in May, we sent our raw fleeces off to The Natural Fibre Company, who scoured, carded, dyed and spun our rare breed fleeces to create a range of beautiful, unique yarns. This means you can now buy local wool from the flock you and your family know and love!
All of our spun wools come in two weights, Double Knitting and Aran, and are available in a variety of colours including natural, grey, navy, lavender and guava. We are selling as near cost prices as possible and yarn will be posted second class. You can buy wool online through our website!
About our wool
You might be surprised by just how much wool sheep grow in just a year. Simba here was shorn in May (10 months after his previous shearing) and produced about a fleece that weighed nearly 4kg. Here he is looking a bit sheepish just after his trim! However, most of our sheep produce raw fleeces that weigh 2-3kg (more info here).
After shearing, the raw fleeces are washed (or scoured) thoroughly to remove both impurities and some of the waxy lanolin. You may have noticed this residue when stroking the sheep, and it is often used in lotions and other cosmetics.
Once scoured, the wool is carded in preparation for spinning. This is a bit like combing, separating and disentangling the wool fibres. This can be done by hand, or by drum, in which two drums lined with spikes for holding the fibre (much like a wiry dog brush) are rotated. The wool is then ready to be dyed (as some of our wool has been) and spun into recognisable yarn! This can be done by hand using a spinning wheel or spindle, or more commonly these days, by machine.