Well, it’s been quite a while since we sat down together for a new episode!
A disclaimer: I found it really hard to record this. My heart was not fully in it when I sat down to write words and then record them and I didn’t have my usual mic set up. I enjoyed recording the wool exploration but then I became disheartened again when it came to editing. Its taken a while to get something to put out there. I hope you will forgive any faltering and the fact that there is no music this time, and that you find what is there distracting, if not as enjoyable as a “usual” episode – whatever that is!
A heck of a lot has been going on since the last episode, way back in December. We moved flat and that was not something we wanted to do…and our new flat has revealed a few horrors which have lead us to decide that we will move again, when we can. I’m not going into that – its not ideal, but its fine. But- slightly more pressingly – the world seems a very different place since the last time I podcast. COVID19 is sweeping about and turning life as we know it upside down. Lots of us are working from home, some of us don’t know whats happening with our jobs, with our childcare, with family and friends. People are unwell, or could potentially become unwell. Social distancing, self isolation, shielding! It is – quite frankly- horrific.
I don’t have anything cheering to say other than, let’s grab a WIP, grab a drink and for a wee while, let’s distract ourselves with wool.
I’ve not quite got a regular show in me and I don’t have a great amount of vim as I sit down to do this, but I’d really like to do some wool exploration today with you,
Hebridean Wool Exploration
I have to start this with a caveat, which is that I have not unpacked my books (we’ve just decided to only unpack the essential and everything else is packed in boxes in the office) so I don’t have any of my usual reading. However, our woolly mucker and WoolWork group Mod Mazzy has done us a solid and has sent me the page from the Fleece and Fibre Sourcebook for Hebridean! Thank you, Mazzy! I also make use of material from the Hebridean Sheep Society.
As I have not done my usual amount of research, I also want to point you to further reading and listening in the WoolWork/KnitBritish Archives:
You can read my interview with Stephen and Rachel Varwell\, who own Croft 29, a small family business creating wool from their Hebridean flocks on Skye;
I reviewed the Croft29 yarn in Episode 81
You can also read my interview with Rachel Atkinson just ahead of her launching Daughter of A Shepherd, back in 2016.
You can listen to my podcast from The North Atlantic Sheep and Wool Conference 2018, in Uist. There you can hear me give a rundown of talks, many of which focused on the Hebridean sheep and the primitive breed group, to which they belong.
Images from our Wool Explorers –
all images are copyright to each explorer, as noted in the accompanying information.
WFCornwell – Daughter of a Shepherd Lace weight (Woollen spun)
WoollyElly’s handspun – fibre from Wychwood Spinner
ACraftyScientist – Gam Farm Rare Breeds DK (woollen)
AFatPieceofWool – West Highland Wool
Myrtle28 – Crowkeld Farm
SilverSpringKnit – Daughter of a Shepherd Original batch (not available in 100% Hebridean any more). DK Worsted spun
Daughter of a Shepherd – as above
Handpun from The Bairn, the Hebridean sheep from Shankend Farm.
Thanks for listening, if you did make it through! The podcast will be back again at some point. I hope you’re well and being looked after if you’re not well. All my good wishes to you. Jeremy Jean joined me at the end of the episode for a wee purr, and she sends lots of head boomfs your way too
| Important Information
There is no music this episode. Purring is provided by JeremyJean. All wool explorer’s images belong to them and have been used with kind permission. The Hebrideans in the header image were pictured by me at the Small Holder’s Festival in New Lanark.