Riding the Rising Wave – defashion dorset and Dorset Art Weeks

I will be attending the Defashion Dorset weekend on the 24th and 25th of May, on Friday I will be running a small workshop from 10:30 – 12:30, and this a Beginners Lace Knitting. Details are available on the website https://www.hawkersfarm.org/dorset-art-weeks Many years ago – about 25 or more – I went to a local Agricultural Show and put my hands on the back of what I learned to be a Black Wensleydale and my heart sang.  The warmth of the fleece, the feel of its silkiness, the sheer size of the animal, its black tongue and full throated voice and its total presence took me by storm.   I kept the Breeder’s name: Dr. Jeannie Muddle. Several years passed and I finally acquired 2 in-lamb ewes. That was my baptism

“I Knew a Bank Where the Wildflowers Grew……”

My father was a naval engineer and during WWII he alternated between active service and re-building battleships, often also camouflaging them with paint to look like a destroyer and a frigate with a gap in the middle exactly where the engine room was positioned to deflect enemy attention.  More on camouflage later. At five or six years old after the war ,I would be taken down the hatchways on  board ship  to experience the  actual engines deep in the ship’s belly. Down past the galley and the rich  smell of baking bread. On down past the steam filled laundry and the scent of soap washed clean sailors. the I remember the vibrations, the pistons moving rhythmically, the noise of all the different parts meshing together, the smell of engine oil,

How it all began.

When did I first feel the urge to create something meaningful in my life? Looking back it was around the age of 4, my brother and I were in bed for several weeks, only half daylight allowed, with measles and whooping cough during the harsh winter of 1947. A gift arrived and with it a magical book full of paper cut-out dolls and clothes to put together. I was transformed with joy.Over the next few years there followed hours of experimentation with fish glue and cardboard, sewing, and making all kinds of things up in the attic of the old run-down Victorian house we lived in. Already passionate about animals, I built fields and hedges, painted farm fences and then taught myself how to create leather saddles to fit a

Reclaiming the Magic of Touch

Everything I make derives from my own wool and Wensleydale sheep. I have worked with Wensleydale fibre for many years, on the sheep and off it. Raw and spun, knitted or felted it has a feel all its own. It is globally sought after and locally produced. But that isn’t the point here in this first piece on my new website.  The point about Wensleydale Longwool is that it does special things for many people who see it and more importantly feel it. Yes, it is acknowledged to be the queen of fibres, for its lustre, softness and ability to hold dye colour, but that isn’t romance, that is partly due to itself and partly due to how it is grown, shorn and taken to end point, whatever that might