Merino – Year of the Sheep

July 8, 2015

                 image: The downloadable Merino wool card is available here. Merino wool is arguably one of the most recognized breeds of sheep today. “Made with Merino” labels are used on products to add instant value.  Merino wool has become synonymous with soft, against the skin comfort. But there…

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Ashland Bay’s Year of the Sheep Celebration

June 30, 2015

                                   image from As hand spinners, dyers and felters, we have the distinct privilege of working with any type of fiber we can get our hands on. It’s like cooking from scratch. You know exactly what is in…

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Wool Classification for Domestic Sheep

June 29, 2015

                         picture courtesy of Breeds of sheep can be classified in several different ways. Examples being, classed by their suitability for meat production vs wool production, topography of the area they originated or the type of wool they produce. For Ashland Bay’s purposes,…

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Redefining Felt, Part 2

June 23, 2015

Part 2 from felt artist Janice Arnold Finding inspiration:Trying to describe inspiration is complex! It begins with embracing every moment of the present with a sense of wonder and innocence.  In this mental state I find inspiration in unexpected places. Sometimes it is a literal thing I see- like a pattern created by light or…

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Redefining Felt

June 17, 2015

We have a fantastic treat on the blog today, part 1 of a 2 part series from felt artist Janice Arnold. Janice Arnold takes handmade FELT to extremes. The daughter of a cartographer, she learned scale as a second sense. Her work ranges from intricately executed pieces to elaborate environments in refined textures from luminous…

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What does Superwash treated Wool mean?

May 14, 2015

People have been spinning wool fiber into yarn for thousands of years, and the hand wash care of these yarns have been long understood. Then along came the synthetic yarns and machine washable garments that fiercely competed with wool. In the 1950’s the wool industry developed a process by which wool could withstand machine washing…

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not just for knitting

April 2, 2015

We have a special treat on the blog today! Head on over to Decorotation where Brett shows us how to turn a couple skeins of Thick n Thin and a branch into a gorgeous wall hanging. Be sure to check out her other interior design posts for some extra inspiration.

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Polwarth – the rising star of 2014

February 27, 2015

While the Blue Face Leicester wools (ecru BFL, Superwash BFL, BFL/silk) and, of course, Merino wool (in 21.5 and 19 micron) continue to be in the top ten performers for the ecru fiber division, Falkland wool top, Polwarth wool top, and Corriedale cross wool have had a significant gain in interest in 2014. With the…

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Pattern redo: Shawl to Cowl

February 5, 2015

A few weeks ago, we talked about pattern redos on the blog. Here I will talk about a super simple fix to a shawl or scarf that just doesn’t sit right. I recently finished a pattern for this beautiful shawl with our Tahoe yarn. Although I don’t usually wear shawls, the pattern was so intriguing;…

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2014 Superstar: The Lovely Lotus – 60% Superwash merino/20% Yak down/20% Cultivated Silk

January 14, 2015

When this new yarn arrived last year, I was first in awe of the natural, beautiful, silvery grey color. Then, I could hardly wait to put a skein in the dyepot to see what magical colors would appear! The superwash merino and yak soak up the dye while the silk shimmers and shines. With a…

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