Friday, 10 July 2015

Woolfest 2015

Well another Woolfest has been and gone for another year.

The weather turned wet and windy for set-up day but by the second day of the show the weather was lovely and sunny. But we awoke on Sunday morning to very blustery weather with lashing rain, not nice for a long trip down the motorway. As usual there were lots of lovely sheep on display again, here is a sample.

Some of the local Herdwick sheep.


And the undoubted stars of the show were these Valais Blacknose sheep which are originally from the Valais region of Switzerland. This breed was introduced with stock imported from Switzerland a couple of years ago and I believe there are now over 400 of them in Britain. I have managed to buy a Valais fleece recently which I will post about sometime soon. Usually the alpacas get all the attention but this year it was these cuties, the pen was constantly surrounded by people and it took several visits before I could get in close enough. And there is always a stack of inspiration! Meet the two "Get Weaving" ladies Sarah and Elisabeth.

Their range of clothing patterns is really fantastic and I am busy weaving fabric from my hand spun to make the dress that Sarah is wearing (on the left). I also have plans afoot to spin some Cotswold fleece that I am dyeing at the moment to make the weft yarn for a skirt from one of their patterns. I also found time to visit The Saori Shed and meet Kim, the lady I bought my saori loom from.
So much lovely stuff to inspire you!
It is always nice to have the chance to chat with the visitors spreading the word about weaving and catching up with our customers who come to our stand and show us the projects they have completed using the yarn they have bought from us. My next show with Helen won't be until September but I shall have plenty of time, I hope, to finish weaving my fabric and maybe even get it sewn up!


  1. Have you spun any of the Valais wool??? The Herdwicks look like they are wearing someone's coat!!!! What a fun event...wish I could have been there. Thanks for the post.

    1. I haven't spun any Valais yet, only washed it. Looks similar to a Welsh Mule ( or longwool cross) fleece, certainly not for knitwear but would be good for weaving something like a skirt or jacket maybe. Also looks like it would take dyes well.

  2. Hi Rachel,
    I'm writing a book about people making their own clothes and have been on the hunt for a good photo of a yarn fair to include. Would you be willing for me to use one of your lovely Woolfest photos - the first one on this post? If so, please email me: amy (at)