wool

Using British Wool

Cruelty free wool?

Copy of 1180px x 360px – sheep banner 2I love animals and am a vegetarian. When I saw a post about someone using vegan materials to crochet with because they thought using wool was being unkind to animals, it made me stop and think.

I love using wool and the fact that it is a natural material, I love the feel and smell of it. I wanted to know if I could be more ethical and animal friendly whilst still using wool.

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My learning journey..

When I first started felting I bought “wool” from Hobbycraft. As time went on, and I started buying from more specialist wool shops, I started noticing differences in the textures of the wools and that wool came from different breeds!

Looking into sheep friendly wool, I came across the organisation British Wool.

What’s so good about British Wool?

  • They promote high standards of animal welfare
  • They provide shearing skills training to their wool producers
  • They educate on best industry standards

and also worth bearing in mind…

  • UK sheep farms are small, the farming is not intensive
  • The sheep are raised naturally outdoors on pasture

They have detailed Welfare regulations on their website and excellent information on the 60 breeds of sheep that we have in the U.K.! Phew! Looks like I have a lot more learning to do!

Where can I buy it?

Looking to buy British Wool? I can thoroughly recommend the excellent online shop “World of Wool”. It sells a wide range of natural and dyed wool. The British Wool symbol is displayed on all the relevant wools making it easy to search for. Another useful source of information about British wools and their qualities.

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Herdwick sheep made using Herdwick wool!

 

What about merino wool?

Merino wool – people often wonder about whether this is cruelty free, as mulesing is a cruel practice that happens at some merino sheep farms. Please be aware of this and buy your merino wool from sources that buy from non mulesed sheep farms, as I do.

 

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Yellow merino wool on the inside adds a pop of colour

 

 

So, next steps for me?

  • To continue to search for, buy and use British wool wherever I can.
  • To look into buying from individual British farms and farmers, where I can be assured of the animal’s welfare
  • To consider some vegan options and alternatives
  • To continue to specify the type of wool I use in my felted products

 

 

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Bunny blog post!

Hello! Welcome to my post about my needle felted bunnies !

Last week I was feeling a bit under the weather, you know, where you don’t feel awful but you have not a lot of energy.

Making more bowls felt out of the question as that involved standing in the kitchen for lengthy periods of time and vigourously rubbing and rolling as I wet felted.

A couple of weeks earlier, whilst sitting on a bus, I had noticed a rabbit (a pretend one) attached to a student’s rucksack and had that lightbulb moment; ping! I’ll make bag bunnies!

Here is my attempt.

 

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Bag bunny attempt

Yeah, not great. Disheartened I left bunny making for a while…until last week when I thought I’d have another go.

What helped me this time was actually looking at REAL rabbits. I have two in my garden! What a wasted opportunity if I don’t observe them! I noticed that I’d got the nose shape all wrong and his front paws were too big.

Needle felted rabbits after real rabbit observation.

Actually, the rabbit with the carrot is a slightly improved version that I did once I’d got more in the swing of it. The first version wasn’t so smiley and his back feet not as substantial. He also didn’t start off with a green scarf.

I put the white rabbit on my Etsy shop and then rediscovered some accessories from my old card making/wedding invitation days.

This inspired me to make a bunny bride!

 

Using some of these accessories, I then improved my white bunny by adding a ribbon around her neck and giving her some flowers to hold. I made her feet more substantial too and improved her nose by adding a bit of brown under the pink. I relisted her as the new improved version.

 

Then followed smaller, “younger” bunnies… A cheeky brother and sister pair…

 

And finally some babies! I had wet felted some brown Bluefaced Leicester wool a while ago (to make cloaks for little Lego figures) and thought this would make a lovely blanket for them. I blanket stitched around this and added some daisy stitches. I also wet felted a bowl shape as a bed and embroidered a couple of daisies on there too. All my bunnies, even these baby ones, have “whiskers”, made from threading invisible thread through their faces using a needle, ouch!

So, there we are. I really enjoyed my week of needle felting bunnies. It was exciting to feel myself getting better at the process as time went on. I came across the rabbit that was my very first attempt at needle felting, probably from a couple of years ago now.

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First ever go at needle felting.

I was so proud of him and I actually like the shape of him. Hmmm, might have a go at other bunnies in this pose…. I’m sure I will be returning to bunny felting again soon. Watch this space!

Most bunnies (apart from early “experiments”) available to buy at my Etsy shop.

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Featured Content

Custom made felted dogs

Your dog in felt!

 

A perfect present for the dog lover in your life.

Bespoke, pure wool, needle felted dogs.

 

poochie portraits

Dog portraits on a 10 x 10 cm canvas

Price £20

 

 

bandana buddies

Perfect for your desk at work or a student’s reminder of home! Complete with a spotty bandana or collar.

Approximately 10-12cm tall

Price £25

 

 

 

faithful friends

Made with the proportions, shape and other characteristics of your dog. Fur patterning recreated. Complete with felted bandana or collar.

dog size approximately 12-13cm long and 10-12cm tall

Price £40

 

Interested?

Message me. I will need photographs of your dog, with as many viewpoints as you can, include back, legs, tail.

Postage currently costs £3.90 within the U.K.

I also post internationally and can quote you a price for that when you message me.

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If you wish to have a variation on any of the above, please do get in touch! These are bespoke dogs made especially and uniquely for the customer and I want you to be happy with your new felted friend!

 

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