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Tools & Materials : Vermont Wool

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This past Labor Day weekend my husband and I made our way up to Montgomery Center, Vermont. We had a wedding to attend in nearby East Berkshire, so we rented a ski cabin and decided to make a nice holiday weekend of it. I had plenty of time to explore before and after the wedding, and I was delighted to stumble upon Mountain Fiber Folk, a yarn and fiber cooperative right there on Main Street.

mff_sign

I had a wonderful time speaking with the ladies at the shop. I learned that the yarn and fibers were almost exclusively collected from happy sheep at local farms (and when they say local, they mean local—a round-trip to all six farms takes only 2 1/2 hours of driving on their "Farm to Yarn Tour"). Wool is hand-dyed, yarn is hand-spun, and completed gift items are handmade by members of the cooperative.

I also learned about Lincoln Wool, a super-curly, heavy wool from sheep of the same name that is used to spin a nice heavy, shiny yarn, but also offers endless possibilities on its own as a felting fiber because it just looks SO DARN COOL.

Back
1 of 6
washed Lincoln wool in its beautiful natural color

1 washed Lincoln wool in its beautiful natural color

(i bought a ton of it)

2 (i bought a ton of it)

here, dyed in my two favorite colors! you can see it takes color really well ...

3 here, dyed in my two favorite colors! you can see it takes color really well ...

4 "Miss Priscilla," made by Carol at the shop - I couldn't resist giving her a home on my desk.

Another use - felted beards! (photo from Mtn Fiber Folk's website)

5 Another use - felted beards! (photo from Mtn Fiber Folk's website)

Wool still on the sheep (image from Wikipedia). (HOW do they see!?)

6 Wool still on the sheep (image from Wikipedia). (HOW do they see!?)

I am now daydreaming of leaving the city and raising my own sheep in this tiny northern corner of Vermont.

Mountain Fiber Folk can be found online here (they don't have an online shop YET, but they are extraordinarily helpful over e-mail and phone). Let us know about other fun local shops near you!

Comments (10)

  • Now this is the kind of tour that I would love. I wonder if they just have sheep or if they have fiber from goats, llama and alpaca as well. What a great way to spend the day.

  • Thank you so much Kirsten! We had such a great time with you and hope you do come and visit us again soon. I'm sure some of our members would be happy to set you up with your own fiber flock!

    Hi Peggy. Oh yes, we have colored angora goats, llamas and alpacas, as well as angora bunnies. Our tour is usually at the end of May, after Spring Shearing and the shop is open year round. Hope to catch up with you!

  • Hi Peggy, I am a member of Mountain Fiber Folk and yes, we do have other fibers! Our member farms raise Alpaca, Llama, Colored Angora Goats, and Angora Rabbits in addition to several varieties of sheep. The fiber tour is in the spring so you can see all the new babies. Hope to see you!

  • I am a member of Mountain Fiber Folk and wanted to reply to Peggy's comment. We do have more than just sheep fiber, we also have goat, llama, alpaca, and angora bunny fiber.

  • I'm so happy to see that you discovered this treasure of a place in a tiny Vermont town that I have known and loved for years. I'm a knitter and I've found it impossible to use any other yarns in something that I invest so much time on. The "girls" are so fabulous and have been an extraordinary help on all my projects. It is a must stop shop for all my guests visiting me here in Vermont!

  • We are the inn right across the street from them, rated number one in North America for pet owners, and in the top 10 in the USA on tripadvisor.com for romance. Any one who mentions this article can get 10 percent off their stay. This is an adorable little town, and great for crafters and people who like organic, sustainable agriculture!! Jay Kerch

  • Hi, I'm a freind and customer of Sabra and some of the other members of the Mountain Fiber Folk. They are a talented and fun group of ladies. I have used their yarns and bought their products and just love them. My all-time favorite is a pair of fingerless gloves that keep my hands warm on our chilly Vermont days, but allow me to do my work. It is really exciting to see them mentioned on this blog!

  • I am so happy to see Mountain Fiber Folk getting this well deseved attention. This is a favorite find for me.

    I have been visiting them each Fall for several years and always find them helpful and really nice people. I enjoy supporting a cooperative and will be back this year to visit and be thrilled by the variety of beautiful fiber and products they offer.

    I always find something that screams "take me home" and I usually do.

    Once you have been there, you will return.

    Continued success to Mountain Fiber Folk.

  • The crew at the shop/studio are a gracious and talented bunch! Our family adopted a pet sheep this spring, and when we had her shorn it seemed wasteful to mulch our raspberries with her lovely fleece (as the guy that did the shearing had advised), so I paid the shop a visit,spoke to Sabra, and fell in love with the shop. She said that Peaches' fleece was beautiful and promised to find someone that could put it to good use. I'm so pleased that we live nearby! When things ever(?)quiet down around here I can hardly wait to take some classes and 'remind' my fingers how to card and spin wool! We've even adopted an angora goat in preparation for that glorious day when time presents itself. If you're at all in the area, please don't miss this great place. Even if you don't spin, knit, crochet, weave, or wish to - there is so much creative energy in this shop that it's a joy just to stop in.

  • Wool from MT Fiber Folk is available on-line at
    http://travelthekingdom.com/store.php?supplier=5

    through the Northeast Kingdom website.

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