25 November 2006


Cathy asked what the Breedswap project that I did the Clun Forest research for was. In a nutshell, it's a project being run by some folks on the Spindlers YahooGroups list to create for the participants a resource notebook that will contain research and fiber samples from 32 different breeds. The following is from the introductory email announcing the project and inviting participants:

Here's what you will be expected to contribute:

1) An information sheet on the breed you are signed up for. I will collect the information and have them printed and copied so all the sheets in the notebook will have the same format. See below for the information required. Please be as complete as possible.

2) For each participant, an envelope with one yard of yarn you have spun, and one lock of *washed* fiber. The lock of fiber should NOT be carded or combed. With full participation, this will be 32 yards.

3) For each participant, a baggie containing one ounce of washed fiber. (This may also be prepared by carding or combing, but it isn't necessary.) With full participation, this will be 32 baggies.

4) Money for expenses; $10.00 per person to cover postage, copying costs, the cost of notebooks and index pages.

5) Optional: a picture of a sheep of the breed you were assigned.

Here's what you will end up with:

1) A printed copy of each sample sheet with a lock of fiber and a piece of yarn attached. You will receive these in a notebook with a printed cover and printed indices.

2) A set of baggies with one ounce of fiber to spin for each breed represented in the swap.
Each participant volunteered for one or more breeds they'd be willing to research and contribute the fiber for, and based on what people were willing to contribute, the organizers assigned the following breeds: Polwarth, CVM, Perendale, Navajo Churro, Corriedale, Jacob, Blue Faced Leicester, Icelandic, Cotswold, Romney, Ramboulliet, Gotland, Cormo, Montadale, Cheviot, Shetland, Clun Forest, Lincoln, Gulf Coast, Border Leicester, Finn, Leicester Longwool X, Hog Island, Dorset, Columbia, Suffolk, California Red, Polypay, Coopworth, English Leicester, Merino, and Targhee. I don't know all of those, but thanks to Carol, I now have a copy of In Sheep's Clothing, so I'm planning to read up on some of the ones I don't know before the binders are complete.

And at the moment, I'm behind in getting the fleece prepared. I have the washed locks, they just need to be sorted and put into baggies. I sent the fleece to be processed and didn't hear anything from the mill for several weeks. When I called to inquire that they'd at least gotten the fleece, they told me it would be about another month before they could get the processed fleece back to me. Assuming they stick to that estimate, I should be fine. If they push for more time then, though, I'm going to have to figure out where to get two plus pounds of processed Clun Forest fleece on very short notice. *sigh*

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