Swopsie daisie I got me some Castlemilk Moorit Fleece

Top result from Mondays Guild meeting (Mid Norfolk Association of the Guild of Spinners Weavers and Dyers). Got my hands on some gorgeaous Castlemilk Moorit fleece – a great swop for the last of my chocolate brown Alpaca fleece with Liz (check out Lizs’ facebook page click here ). Castlemilk Moorit is a primitive type rare breed, quite small but has no kemp. It was developed in the early 1900’s as a parkland sheep by crossing Shetland and Manx Loghtan ewes with a Mouflon ram. The fleece is always moorit (brown or fawn), with white underparts and is rated quite highly. This stuff is quite tight, fine and soft with a beautiful lustre to it. Its naturally lighter and the tips and darker at the base and has a staple length of <2 – 7 cm.  The picture is of the longer staples.

Castlemilk Moorit Fleece
Castlemilk Moorit Fleece

So this gorgeous fleece is going to need a conventional woollen approach (rolags and long draw). Which will make is super speedy to spin up. I have it earmarked for my next pattern design project – a very chic V-neck jumper knitted topdown. I might blend it with some alpaca I have in similar gingery tones or I could ply it with it. I can see an afternoon of happy experimentation and sampling coming on. More on this to come methinks. Swoping fleece is a great way of getting some beautiful rare and unusual fibre.  Its good to pass around some of what you have that is more than you need.  Its a great way to build up a bank of fibre ‘credit’ and good will amongst your peers.  I recommend it. It was a good meeting with Liz using us as test mob for her latest workshop on Broomstick Crochet.  Although I am not a crocheter (is this the correct term?) myself it did give a lovely open looped pattern that I liked. I think it would work well as a panel or feature in a knitted piece. In the meantime still ploughing away through sisters’ birthday shawl. One quarter of the way through the lace edge, taking so so so very long, treacle time. Better pull my finger out thought it needs to be in New Zealand by May 8th.

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