Ewes-ful Fiber Arts is a small studio and business dedicated to the production of traditionally hand-spun yarns from natural fibers.
Throughout history, fiber arts have been a necessary and useful part of every culture around the world. There is archeological evidence supporting the fact that drop spindles were used to spin threads and yarns as far back as Neolithic times. Even before that, spinning was being accomplished by pulling fibers from a group and manually twisting them to form a rudimentary thread which was stronger than the individual fibers themselves.
Fiber arts include not only spinning, but also weaving, knitting, and fabric work, including quilting, embroidery, and many others. Even the intricate netting work done by fishermen, is a form of fiber arts. Fiber arts provide people with clothes, homes, furnishings, warmth, livelihood, decorative articles, and many other useful things.
The name "Ewes-ful Fiber Arts" is a play on words, taking advantage of the fact that a female sheep is called an "ewe" (pronounced "you"). Sheep have been domesticated for thousands of years; they are an important part of many bible stories attesting to their importance in the lives of the people of that time. It is from sheep that the luxuriant and wonderful fiber known as merino wool, is obtained.
In addition to sheep, , fibers can be obtained from many natural animal and plant sources; fibers are harvested from creatures such as camels, yaks, llamas, alpacas, goats, dogs, silkworms, and also from plants such as flax, cotton, and bamboo, all of which have provided raw materials for fiber workers, down through the centuries. In our modern age, industrial technology has allowed the development of synthetic fibers including nylon, polyester, and rayon, to name only a few of the many others.
Ewes-ful Fiber Arts offers a selection of hand spun and hand dyed yarns. These yarns are suitable for knitting, weaving and crochet. Hand spun/hand dyed yarns have a character and style of their own, each skein being an individual work of art. They are unequaled in the commercial yarn world for individuality and virtually unparalleled for quality.
I maintain my own flock of sheep which are raised and cared for to provide wool for my needs. My sheep are high percentage Border Leicester cross and grow a fleece of up to 8 inches staple length each year but, I choose to shear every six months, to obtain a more manageable staple length of three to four inches. Border Leicester fleece has a very characteristic "pencil curl" to it, as opposed to the fine crimp of other sheep breeds, such as merino. The wool is high luster, strong enough to make a good sock yarn, yet soft enough to wear as a sweater or scarf.
Also, I have a herd of angora rabbits, which produce ultra-fine angora wool. Angora rabbit fiber is eight times warmer than sheep's wool, and extremely soft and fuzzy ! Often, Angora rabbit fiber is blended with other fibers to reduce the warmth factor of the angora while increasing the softness of the finished yarn.
My Angora rabbitry is named "Storybook Dreams" and is home to my German and German Hybrid Angora rabbits. Baby rabbits are available occasionally, for sale as breeding stock to other fiber artists, or to knowledgeable pet homes that shall provide these rabbits with the quality of care they require and deserve.
At this time, other than my hand-crafted yarns, the finished products which I make, such as handwoven triangle shawls, hand woven and knitted articles, and quilted items, are available only at the craft and fiber arts shows which I participate in periodically or possibly, by special request. When I finally retire from teaching kindergarten and can devote more time to my fiber arts passion, I shall include finished items for sale on these pages.
As a kindergarten teacher, I like to share knowledge and experiences with others, both children and adults. Also, I enjoy promoting and preserving an understanding of the fiber arts and often, I provide demonstrations, talks, and workshops which can be developed around the needs of your group or gathering. If you are interested in hosting an hour long demonstration and informal lecture, , a spinning demonstration for a festival, , or a two or three hour hands-on workshop in the art of handspinning or simple weaving, feel free to contact me. With sufficient advance notice to schedule accordingly, I can accommodate traveling up to three hours from my studio in the central Maryland region; note that travel charges may apply, depending on distance. Prices for individual demonstrations and workshops vary depending on factors such as length of time, type of workshop and consumable materials involved. Please eMail me for more information.
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