Last year - the first time we produced our Gower wool - we sold out of it by February and had to sit around and wait for the sheep to be ready to shear again and with the terrible year that it was, didn't have any more supply until October. Learning from that mistake, I asked for an extra sack of fleece to keep for spinning later in the year and treasured it in our garage until the current stock started running low.
Now, a 20 kilo sack of raw sheeps fleece is not a small thing. It stands about waist high and pongs of lanolin. The sacks from the Natural Fibre Company who spin our wool are also bright white. Nonetheless, the courier company charged with transporting this gigantic, white sack have somehow utterly and completely managed to lose it. They've looked for weeks up and down depots in the country but have now decided that the sack is, in fact, gone.
We've been reinbursed for the value of the fleeces of course, but sadly, it still means no more Gower Wool until after summer shearing. There are still a good few hanks in both dyed and undyed colours available but that really is it for now!
So I have been thrown into dyeing my other bases for now, and with spring hopefully looming, I have prepared a few fresh and springy colours in the lovely Lithuanian linen.
It is a heavy lace to light fingering weight and this year we are doing it in the smaller 50gr hanks to allow you to mix and match the colours.
As linen is very absorbent, it takes the dye very quickly and thoroughly, making for an almost solid colour with only minor shifts expected of a hand dyed product.
For those not used to knitting with linen, it may appear stiff and stringy att first, but it softens in your hands as you work with it and will continue to soften for the many years that you wear it. Fantastically hard wearing, once blocked it also holds lace patterns beautifully without curling back up on itself and drapes very well.
I will be adding many more colours as soon as I dye them, as well as long long scarves made from the commercially dyed version of this same yarn. Let's just hope it will be warm enough for these lighter knits soon!