St Abbs Yarn Festival

Monday, 10 March 2014  | 

I have been keeping a secret for a few weeks now.  I've been keeping it partly because I have been enjoying being the guardian of something new and delicious and partly because there was work to be done before its revelation could bring maximum excitement.


I am talking about our newest yarn - Yeavering Bell.  This yarn is unlike any other available.  It is made from fine kid mohair (60%) and the very best Wensleydale wool (40%) and has come back from the spinning mill all soft and shining and luscious.  I just had to be the first to play with it, now I can’t wait to share it.

For the first time we have had our yarn worsted spun.  Yarns are spun from 'tops' and for worsted spinning these tops must be combed not carded.  The difference is that combing removes short fibres and aligns the remaining long fibres parallel to one another.  The great benefit of worsted spinning for long staple, high lustre fibres like mohair and Wensleydale is that it requires less twist and so allows the natural lustre to shine through.  And wow, it really does.


Yeavering Bell Mohair & Wensleydale Yarn from Whistlebare


For those that have read my previous blog you will know that a recent outingto Yeavering Bell inspired us to name this very special yarn after this glorious place.  Our Spring colour palette also stems from the hills and was revealed, for the first time, at lovely St Abbs Yarn Festival last weekend.  


Saturday morning was an anxious time.  The goats, sheep and team here at Whistlebare had invested so much in the new yarn and were very proud of the results - what if nobody liked it?  Fortunately Frisk and Frolic (two Wensleydale shearlings) came along to offer moral support and show off their beauty. 


Wensleydale Sheep at St Abbs Yarn Festival


And at lunchtime some new samples of the Summer patterns (coming soon!) arrived to an eager reception.  The yarn was very well received with lots of crafters waxing lyrical about it’s feel and the colours.  I can't wait to see pictures of finished projects - so please if you bought from us do stay in touch! 


I can't promise that I won't be keeping any more secrets in the future but I am sure that this one was worth waiting for.