In this month’s bumper episode I talk sock knitting, my wool pantry, dyeing and kitchen gardening but the thread that ties these topics together is a desire to make with as many local materials, breeds and varieties as possible.
This podcast kicks off with an update on my sock experiment. I am working with 100% Poll Dorset Lambswool from Northern Yarn but it tooks some trial and error to find the right pattern.
Patterns and books referenced in this section:
- The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook by Deb Rowson & Carol Ekarius;
- Phalanges by Clare Devine from her Sock Anatomy; and
- The Simple Socks Collection by Louleigh, including her Socks with Holes In and Ankle Socks with Ventilation patterns.
Future possible yarns for this experiment include:
I then introduce one aspect of my wool pantry: its bioregional nature.
While I choose to source as much of my wool from the British Isles, I am curious about local breeds in other countries, farmers elsewhere working to preserve heritage breeds and independent mills.
The following are good sources of information on local fibre champions in the US and Canada:
- Fiber Trek (podcast);
- Ninja Chickens (podcast);
- Wool ‘n Spinning (podcast);
- @TinyPaperFoxes (Instagram); and
- @BrineandHeath (Instagram).
And for more ideas about natural and local resources, do check out Handmade and Woolen’s NaturalWardrobeMAL: Materials thread.
I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the dye pots in recent weeks. I talk at length about my reasons for dyeing cotton and mention the following resources:
- Global Organic Textile Standards;
- Dylon Washing Machine Dye;
- Procion Reactive Dyes;
- Two natural dyes: Madder (Rubia tinctoria) and Cutch (Acacia catechu);
- Jennie Dean’s Wild Colors; and
- Ethel Mairet’s A Book on Vegetable Dyes.
I didn’t mention this in the podcast but if you decide to try dyeing, make sure you use gloves as well as a mask if you handle dyes or chemicals in powder form.
Finally, I welcome you into my kitchen garden, i.e. abundant patio veg plot, and introduce you to some herititage vegetable varieties, traditional herbs and edible wildflowers you’ll not find in the supermarket.
- Legend Bush Tomato;
- Lipstick Early Sweet Pepper;
- Champion of England Peas;
- Salad Burnet (Sanguisorba minor);
- Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis); and
- Bladder Campion or Maidenstears (Silene Vulgaris).
I source most of my vegetable seeds from The Real Seed Catalogue.
Music: Springish by Gillicuddy on FreeMusicArchive and shared under Creative Commons Attribution license.