Sunday, April 8, 2018
Hi Strangers! Just a little post to update you, in case you hadn't heard. Hubby and I have retired from shepherding. We sold the farm last winter, and our flock was dispersed to farms all the way from Oregon to North Carolina. While we miss our sheep, we know that they are in good situations, many to breeding farms, and some of the older ewes to a flock near our new home. We get to visit them often. The Wonderful Woollies Fleece and Fiber will continue, but will move to the Little Orchard Farm in Bow WA. Rocky Long, the shepherd from whom we got our original flock, will be hosting many of the same farms from previous years in his new, spacious barn with many new little lambs playing nearby. Rocky has decided to change the schedule from our usual second Saturday in April, to May 12 this year. Here's the scoop: Little Orchard Farm Rocky & Michele Long 6414 Worline Road Bow, WA 98232 (425) 493-3060 firstname.lastname@example.org Look for the green barn! Thank you so very much for being such awesome customers at our farm. We had a wonderful time, and loved every minute working with our sheep and their wool. I hope you'll continue to support Wonderful Woollies as it moves to Rocky and Michele's farm. Happy Spinning! Yvonne and Doug Madsen Bellingham WA USA
Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Hi Everybody! I have to apologize for my lack of posts over the last year! I'm happy to tell you, though, that we're still here, and still planning our annual fiber sale for the second Saturday in April (as we always have done). This year, happily, we don't conflict with the Whidbey Island Spin-in in Oak Harbor (April 2 & 3) or Shepherd's Extravaganza in Puyallup (the week after our sale). We will again have shepherds who raise different breeds from our Romeldale/CVM sheep. So the lineup will include Romney and Romney crosses, Icelandic, Gotland, Dorset, Shetland, Angora (mohair goat), and llama. In addition, our favorite woodworker will be here with his treasures. I've gotten some processed roving back from Snow Peaks Fiber mill - a luscious confection of our dark chocolate-colored wool blended with alpaca & silk which I call "The Dark Side". Also some sweet gray yarn, a blend of CVM and kid mohair. I think the mill will be able to finish another batch of yarn which I think I'll call "Snickerdoodle". There will be some handspun yarn available, too, in case you're in the mood to get to your knitting quickly. Two of our dear friends have been busy at their wheels. Thank you, once again, for braving the elements (I sure hope we don't have snow again this year!), and coming up to shop from our local farmers. Address is 5740 Mertz Rd., Bellingham WA 98226. From I-5, exit at Sunset Blvd./Mt. Baker Hwy & drive east. At Hannegan Rd., turn left (north) and drive past the Smith Rd. intersection to Axton Rd. Turn right (east) on Axton, and it's 1.1 mile to Mertz Rd. Turn left onto Mertz. We're the first barn on the right. If you get lost, please call me on my cell, 360 770 6044. See you then!
Sunday, March 29, 2015
It’s that time again! We are busily preparing for the upcoming Wonderful Woollies Fleece & Fiber Sale, April 11, 2015, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. here at our farm. The sheep are sheared (all except Bliss & Raoul, who were sheared late last year), the fleeces are skirted and I’m in the process of weighing & bagging them up for the sale. (previously Creekside Fiber Mill) and Evergreen Fleece Processing in Woodinville, Washington - Both are very capable of working with our fine, soft wool. We also recommend Zeilinger Wool Company in Frankenmuth, Michigan - They are excellent and very experienced.
Monday, April 7, 2014
IT’S ALMOST HERE! Yes, friends! Our annual Fiber & Fleece sale, WONDERFUL WOOLLIES will be this coming Saturday, April 12, 2014, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. I hope you will be able to come. We have a great variety of fleeces & related products. Here is a complete list of participants: Dawn Deshmane’s CVM/Romeldale crosses - fiber Felicity Fibers, Karen Washington’s flock of alpacas - fiber Windy Hill Farm, Joanne Martinis’s Gotland crosses - fiber & spectacular pelts JNK Llamas, Niki Kuklenski’s llama fleeces & fiber (including blends) Ferndale Fibers, Kathy Green’s sheep fiber & roving Little Orchard Farm, Rocky Long’s CVM/Romeldale fleeces, roving & combed top Marietta Shetlands, John Park’s Shetlands, fleeces & roving Nancy’s Farm, Nancy Giordano’s crosses - fiber & batts River Ranch Angora goats - Rhonda Wreggelsworth’s mohair fiber Spindle Smith - Allen Berry’s hand-carved spindles, needles, hooks & other delights (Allen says he has some new specialties - I can hardly wait to see!) Tina’s Treasures - Tina Thomsen-Park’s hand made yarn Spinners Eden Farm - CVM/Romeldale fleeces, roving, yarn, & blended batts We are planning to have demonstrations on carding, combing & spinning, and please bring your questions about our wonderful fiber animals, washing/processing fleece, whatever! We will do our very best to help you with your fiber-related questions. And if you’re considering adding fleece beasties to your family, this is a wonderful place to connect and talk directly to yarn farmers. And for your viewing pleasure. . . LAMBS! We had nine ewes & two rams born this year. All are beautiful, healthy & full of personality. Here are DRIVING DIRECTIONS: From Interstate 5, take exit #255 (Sunset/Mt Baker Hwy) and go east. Drive about a mile to the intersection at WOBURN/HANNEGAN. Turn NORTH (left) onto HANNEGAN. Continue a few miles, go past the Smith Rd. traffic light to the next intersection & turn EAST (right) onto AXTON Rd. Drive 1.1 mile & you’ll see Mertz Rd. Turn left onto MERTZ & we’re the first barn on the right. If you get to Shuksan Golf Course, you’ve gone about three blocks too far, so turn around & drive back. If you get lost, phone 360 770 6044 for directions. Looking forward to seeing you!
Friday, February 7, 2014
For those of us who are shepherds, this is like Christmas. We are having lambs. After last summer, carefully choosing which seven of our precious ewes to breed, and to which rams (two champions), making sure all are happy together, then watching nutritional status throughout five months of gestation, the little ones are beginning to arrive. This is the most exhausting time of year, what with frequent barn checks and births occurring at all hours (frequently very early mornings). I really like to be present for the births. So this is the time of year that I’m most likely to put cat food in the coffee grinder instead of beans, or brush my teeth with hand cream. But with occasional naps, fueled by sufficient amounts of coffee or breakfast tea and Scottish oat cakes, we manage to get through it. And it’s a joy to see the new little ones & make sure they get off to a good start.
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Friday, April 12, 2013
Tomorrow, April 13, we will host several farms for the Wonderful Woollies Fleece Sale! This is our third annual event & we are looking forward to seeing many of our old & new friends. We have some new farms participating, so here’s the complete list: Carol Boswell Camelot Ranch Alpacas; Dawn Deshmane CVM/Romeldale; Karen Washington Felicity Fibers/Alpaca; Joanne Martinis Windy Hill Farm Gotlands; Jeff & Niki Kuklenski JNK Llamas; Kathy Green Ferndale Fibers, various crosses & fiber; Rocky Long Little Orchard Farm CVM/Romeldale; John Park Marietta Shetlands; Nancy Giordano Nancy’s Farm, various crosses, fiber & fun batts; Patty Yager alpaca; Rhonda Wreggelsworth River Ranch Angora goats; Doug & Yvonne Madsen Spinners Eden Farm CVM/Romeldale; Allen Berry Spindle Smith carved spindles & tools; Brigget LeClair Wake Robin Farm, Icelandic. As you can see, we have a lot of variety this year - hopefully something to please everybody. I know I love to experiment with fleece from different breeds of sheep. Each has it’s unique place & best purpose in the fiber world. Here's one of our fleeces: As for our farm, we are happy that we got all our fiber back from the processors in time for the sale. A Great Big Thank You to both Creekside Fiber Mill in Lebanon OR, and Fantasy Fibers in Canby OR for their excellent work! We highly recommend both. We have roving from both mills, and some beautiful mill-spun yarn from Creekside available this year. And as a special treat, Spinners Eden collaborated with JNK llamas to create two gorgeous roving blends. One is a combination of our Athena, with JNK’s Sirmione - a great pairing. The other is a CVM/llama/silk blend that is to die for. I had some moorit yarn spun, and wondered how it would do in the dyepot, so I tried some bright primary colors. I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome, using Jacquard Acid Dyes in Brilliant Blue and Fire Red, and Dharma Trading’s Acid Dye in Brilliant Yellow. The thing I like about using acid dyes is that the only mordant needed is vinegar. That’s the acid. Not scary at all. :-) Using acid dyes does require some heat. I did the blue yarn in an old Goodwill crock pot that I use only for dyeing, & left it in for a couple of hours to cook, and a couple of hours to cool. (If I had wanted a more uniform color, I would have used a bigger pot with more room for the yarn to move around.) Back to the fiber sale, we will open at 10 a.m. Early birds pay double. Just kidding. Address is 5740 Mertz Rd., Bellingham WA. We are 1.1 mile east of Hannegan Road on Axton. It’s a straight shot east from downtown Ferndale, & if you get to Shuksan Golf Course, you’ve gone three blocks too far. :-) Hope to see you!