Our wool pendulum swings between two extremes: large-scale ranch operations and intimate farms whose animals make up part of the family. Both are vital. But sometimes the smaller folks have a harder time being seen.
Over the weekend I met Hannah Welling, who operates the small-scale @mindfulfolk in New Gloucester, Maine. What immediately struck me were the colors of her yarn, warm and tranquil hues that were obviously derived from natural dyes. But when I went in for a squeeze, I realized she had something even more remarkable: Finn wool and kid mohair, both from her own flock.
Somewhat of a rarity in the yarn world, Finn also happens to be one of my favorite fibers. It has the spunk and vitality of a good Shetland, but with unexpected softness and luster.
Hannah blended it with kid mohair from her own angora goats, adding slink and even more luster. Its a 60/40 blend of Finn and mohair, which should help fabric keep its spring and “wooliness” while also feeling like silk.
We talked about her animals, natural dyeing, and the challenges of making a yarn from start to finish in Maine. And I gladly paid full price for the two skeins you see here, whose knitted fate remains undecided.
If you live in the area, head over to Hannah’s farm this Sunday from noon to 6pm for her Christmas on the Farm event. And if you can’t make it, give @mindfulfolk a follow to see more of her farm and her work.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some yarn to fondle.