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Dorset Down Roving—Fall Birch

from 23.28
sold out
16-03-04 - 0004.jpg
16-03-04 - 0001.jpg

Dorset Down Roving—Fall Birch

from 23.28
sold out

Fall Birch—black, gray, and rich gold 

I'm betting that you've never spun Dorset Down before. Even in the UK, where they were developed in the mid-19th century, they are rare. There are no flocks in North America—this roving came all the way from New Zealand.  

    •    100% crisp, springy Dorset Down roving

    •    processed in New Zealand from New Zealand wool

    •    hand-dyed with professional-grade acid dyes

The Dorset Down was developed when Dorset shepherds crossed local ewes to Southdowns in the 1840s. According to The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook, “after a few generations, they incorporated Hampshire bloodlines.” The result was a breed “that closely reflected its Southdown heritage yet was well suited to Dorset—which has a slightly wetter climate and more arable farmlands than the South Downs.” The Dorset Down Sheep Breeder’s Association in Britain notes that Dorset lambs mature quickly on grass alone and are thus well-suited to organic meat production.

Dorset Downs typically produce 4-5 lb. fleeces with a 2-3 inch staple. Like other Down breeds, the wool is highly elastic, springy, and slightly crisp, with a fine, irregular crimp and rectangular locks. The micron count for this wool is 26-31 microns.

Spinning note: this is roving, not combed top. When wool is processed, it is carded first to open up the fibers; the result of this process is called "roving." As a second step it may also be combed, which takes out the shorter fibers and vegetable matter. The result of the combing process is called "combed top," and this is the most common form in which spinning fiber is sold, so it's probably what you are used to. Dorset Down Roving, as the name suggests, has not been combed, so it still has some shorter fibers and some vegetable matter. 

Why then, might you want roving? Because, as a carded preparation, it is ideally spun woolen, with twist allowed into the drafting zone. If you love to spin woolen, or if you want to learn how, this fiber is much easier to spin woolen than combed top. Your woolen yarns will generally be lighter, warmer (because they trap more air), and fuzzier than those spun worsted, without twist in the drafting zone. The will also likely be less even. Dorset Roving makes a lovely fuzzy yarn, but you should expect that it will be a bit rustic and uneven.

I use only professional grade acid dyes that are light-fast and wash-fast, and I strive to run my dye studio in an environmentally-sensitive way.

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Fall Birch—black, gray, and rich gold 

I'm betting that you've never spun Dorset Down before. Even in the UK, where they were developed in the mid-19th century, they are rare. There are no flocks in North America—this roving came all the way from New Zealand.  

    •    100% crisp, springy Dorset Down roving

    •    processed in New Zealand from New Zealand wool

    •    hand-dyed with professional-grade acid dyes

The Dorset Down was developed when Dorset shepherds crossed local ewes to Southdowns in the 1840s. According to The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook, “after a few generations, they incorporated Hampshire bloodlines.” The result was a breed “that closely reflected its Southdown heritage yet was well suited to Dorset—which has a slightly wetter climate and more arable farmlands than the South Downs.” The Dorset Down Sheep Breeder’s Association in Britain notes that Dorset lambs mature quickly on grass alone and are thus well-suited to organic meat production.

Dorset Downs typically produce 4-5 lb. fleeces with a 2-3 inch staple. Like other Down breeds, the wool is highly elastic, springy, and slightly crisp, with a fine, irregular crimp and rectangular locks. The micron count for this wool is 26-31 microns.

Spinning note: this is roving, not combed top. When wool is processed, it is carded first to open up the fibers; the result of this process is called "roving." As a second step it may also be combed, which takes out the shorter fibers and vegetable matter. The result of the combing process is called "combed top," and this is the most common form in which spinning fiber is sold, so it's probably what you are used to. Dorset Down Roving, as the name suggests, has not been combed, so it still has some shorter fibers and some vegetable matter. 

Why then, might you want roving? Because, as a carded preparation, it is ideally spun woolen, with twist allowed into the drafting zone. If you love to spin woolen, or if you want to learn how, this fiber is much easier to spin woolen than combed top. Your woolen yarns will generally be lighter, warmer (because they trap more air), and fuzzier than those spun worsted, without twist in the drafting zone. The will also likely be less even. Dorset Roving makes a lovely fuzzy yarn, but you should expect that it will be a bit rustic and uneven.

I use only professional grade acid dyes that are light-fast and wash-fast, and I strive to run my dye studio in an environmentally-sensitive way.