Discover the exciting texures of six sheep breeds in our latest yarn round-up
Check out our sheep breed choices
THE KNITTING GIFT SHOP JACOBS CHUNKY
Made from the fleece of the Jacob breed from northern England and spun in Yorkshire, this yarn has a springy loft and slight halo, making it surprisingly light.
It knits up into a chunky, breathable fabric and has a naturally robust texture. Knit it into big, cosy jumpers and wear it over other clothes and outdoor garments, or use it for accessories such as bags and cushions.
It comes in just one shade: the natural, undyed brown of the fleece has grey-brown flecks that give it a heathery look, adding interest. The twist is fairly loose so it will work well for use in felting projects.
RRP £9.95 WEIGHT chunky BALL 100g/110m NEEDLE 6-7mm CONTENT 100% Jacob wool CARE Hand-wash only, dry flat Visit www.theknittinggiftshop.co.uk or call 07528 812731 to buy this yarn.
DOULTON BORDER LEICESTER WORSTED SPUN DK
Coming from the Doulton flock of the rare Border Leicester breed, based in North Yorkshire, this robust yarn is scoured, combed, carded and spun on site.
It has a medium twist, bouncy loft and a slight halo, giving a good stitch definition with just a touch of soft fuzziness. The fabric has a wonderful drape, making it a great choice for cosy winter garments.
There are 16 brilliant shades to choose from, all rich and slightly muted. Our sample is Salthome (above), but there’s also the wonderful Jervaulx (burnt orange) and Appleton Wiske (lime green).
RRP £15.60 WEIGHT DK
BALL 100g/220m NEEDLE 4mm CONTENT 100% Border Leicester wool CARE Hand-wash only, dry flat Visit www.doultonborderleicesteryarn.com or call 07860 363742 to buy.
NOVITA BABY MERINO DREAM
This adorably speckled, 100% Merino yarn is made in Finland. It comes in a range of six understated variegated shades, each of which have a creamy base and are sprinkled with pops of complementary colours (our sample is pinky-purply Catsfoot, above).
It’s a soft, lightweight yarn that knits into a gently draping, delicate fabric. A top choice for baby and child knits, it’s also ideal for light accessories, such as cardis, blankets and berets. Novita has a good selection of patterns available for it, too.
Produced mulesing-free, this yarn is kind on skin and the sheep who produce it.
RRP £5.50 WEIGHT 4ply
BALL 50g/230m NEEDLE 3.25mm CONTENT 100% Merino wool CARE Machine wash at 30ºC, dry flat Visit www.johnlewis.com or call 03456 049049 to buy this yarn.
ROMNEY MARSH WOOLS BRITISH ROMNEY ARAN
The fleece of the Romney breed has a slight crimp that is displayed wonderfully in this loosely spun yarn. The 100% British wool has a bouncy loft, slight halo and comes undyed in its natural creamy colour.
The fabric it produces is lightweight with a unique texture, thanks to the crimped fleece. The stand-out stitch definition is ideal for cabled winter garments.
The yarn is spun from hand-selected, semi-lustrous fleeces and is also available in DK and chunky weights. Kits, such as the popular Little Lamb Kit, are available to knit the yarn into a selection of accessories.
RRP £8 WEIGHT aran
BALL 100g/108m NEEDLE 5mm CONTENT 100% Romney wool CARE Hand-wash only, dry flat Visit www.romneymarshwools.co.uk or call 01233 721800 to buy this yarn.
BLACKER BREEDS PURE SHETLAND DK
Made from the fleece of the Shetland breed, and spun in Cornwall, this yarn is springy with a medium twist, light loft and slight halo. It knits into a sturdy fabric with clear stitches. The range of six shades are all natural, undyed and slightly flecked, giving it a hint of a tweed e ect. They include a creamy white, two greys, fawn, a medium brown called Moorit, and a rich dark brown.
It’s a fabulous yarn for jumpers, cardigans and hats – classic winter woollies, in other words. You’ll find several patterns on Blacker Yarns’ website (below), from patterned mittens to textured jumpers.
RRP £7.20 WEIGHT DK
BALL 50g/110m NEEDLE 4mm CONTENT 100% Shetland wool CARE Hand-wash only, dry flat Visit www.blackeryarns.co.uk or call 01566 777635 to buy this yarn.
WEST YORKSHIRE SPINNERS RE: TREAT
Loosely spun from the Bluefaced Kerry Hill cross, this chunky roving yarn is a must for your winter knits. It works up quickly into a soft fabric, with oodles of drape.
The origins of this unique yarn come from the soft-handled Bluefaced Leicester and the distinctively-marked Kerry Hill. In 11 calming and uplifting shades, with two bonus marled options, you’re spoiled for choice!
Eager to cast on this sumptuous yarn? WYS have released a book of 12 beautiful homewares, jumpers and accessories by Georgia Farrell. Cast on something speedy, or relax with a longer project this winter.
RRP £6.50 WEIGHT chunky BALL 100g/140m NEEDLE 6.5mm CONTENT 100% British wool CARE Hand-wash only, dry flat Visit www.wyspinners.com or call 01535 664500 for stockist details.