September 1st, 2015 by Gretchen
Tunis sheep are really cool.
First brought to the US in Colonial times (George Washington and Thomas Jefferson owned Tunis sheep), they are a heritage breed. Well adapted for our heat and humidity, Tunis was the predominant sheep breed in the south until the Civil War almost wiped them out. Now they are on The Livestock Conservancy’s “watch” list. We love buying fleece to support the breed and turning on knitters and spinners to this wonderful Medium wool.
Our host shepherds, Jim and Irene Mandraccia invite you to visit Beaucaire Farm in Purcellville, Virginia on Sunday September 13th. Meet their Tunis sheep and learn what makes them so cool, see a beautiful farm, taste some LoCo (Loudoun County) libations and maybe take one of the two classes offered.
Entrance fee is $15. Part of that goes to Beaucaire, plus you get a $10 coupon good towards Solitude Wool products. The Field day will start at noon and end at 4:00pm. You’re welcome to bring a wheel or your knitting and sit and hang out for the afternoon. We will have a stand with Solitude yarns and fibers (including our two ply Tunis and double twist Tunis yarns and roving made with Beaucaire fleece). Beaucaire also has two Tunis farm yarns, fleeces and sheep pelts for sale.
We are offering two classes 9two sessions each class) during the day: Knit a rolled brim cap with Karin Fellers (good for beginning knitters, learn circular knitting and more about woolen yarn) and Hand Paint a skein of yarn with Gretchen Frederick. Classes are $45 each and include materials).
Email Gretchen at email@example.com to register for a class or pre-pay entrance. If there are still spots available you can sign up day of the event, but class size limited to 6 participants each, so it might be a good idea to act now.
July 12th, 2015 by Gretchen
We are doubly excited! To have our yarn in a beautiful sweater designed by Mari Chiba in the Fall issue of Knitscene magazine…and to have Ravelers vote to select this pattern out of many for a Knit-A-Long. Pick your color of our Romney yarn and join the KAL.
I will be dyeing two more colors tomorrow, photographing what isn’t up on the site yet…and we are breathlessly awaiting a new natural oatmeal color that I bet will be perfect for this lovely sweater.
March 3rd, 2015 by Gretchen
Schedule update (as of 9/2/15)
- Saturday the 5th & 19th: Falls Church Farmers Market
- Sunday the 6th & 20th: Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market
- Sunday the 13th: Tunis Farm Day at Beaucaire Farm in Purcellville, Virginia. Classes, farm tour, talk about Tunis sheep etc! Registration starts August 25th.
- Weekend of the 26th & 27th:Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival, Clarke County Fairgrounds in Berryville, Virginia. Wonderful mid-size fiber festival. Deb Robson (The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook) will be there! Us too. Come see us in the Ruritan Building.
- Weekend of the 17th & 18th:The New York Sheep & Wool Festival (Rhinebeck!). Get your room now! things fill up and this is the place to be in mid-October. Come see us in the lower level of the Horticulture building (building 22-D), booth 4.
- Saturday the 3th: Falls Church Farmers Market
- Sunday the 4th: Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market
- we will be at the Falls Church and FreshFarm Farmers Markets every weekend until Christmas (weather permitting).
- Tuesday evening, November 3rd: Sue and I will be speaking to the Manassas Knitters
- Saturday evening, November 7th: Sue and I will bespeaking to the KnitXperience, Knitter’s Retreat at Graves Mountain Lodge in Virginia
February 5th, 2015 by Gretchen
and check out this fun tutorial by 222 handspun on blending roving and making a corespun yarn
February 5th, 2015 by Gretchen
Our only event west of the Appalachians! We are excited to be returning to the Madrona Fiber Retreat for the second year.
We are bringing eleven different breeds in yarn form…and bringing pre-release “sneak peek” skeins of our five new yarns, plus lots of roving.
Hope you can come meet us and get familiar with some of our yarn.
February 5th, 2015 by Gretchen
We are being very productive…with all the stuff that we can’t find time for in wool washing and dyeing weather. But we are out and about a bit.
Thank you to the Knitwell group in DC for having us come to your January knitting group. We had a great time.
Thank you to Two Rivers Yarns in Maryland for doing a Solitude Wool trunk show in January. We hope we introduced some of your customers to sheep breeds they didn’t know before.
Our great trek begins as our boxes are already on their way to Tacoma, Washington for the Madrona Winter Fiber Retreat from Feb 12-16th. Very exciting to head West. Come see us at the Marketplace.
We are working on FIVE new yarns! They will be introduced as sneak peek skeins with incomplete information, and with one exception, in their naked undyed selves at Madrona.
Look for us at the Uniquities Fiber Farmers Market in Vienna, Virginia on March 28th
Want to try dyeing yarn AND weaving??? Along with Barefoot Weaver’s Studio, we are offering a three day workshop: Dyeing to Weave. You come here for a day (May 9) of dyeing warp and weft for two scarves. Then, a week later (May 16-17), return to the Barefoot Studio to weave your scarves on an already warped loom. Can it get any better? Contact Beth Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
I plan to offer a couple “Dye Hard” (not really, it’s easy) classes here at the farm this spring. If you’re interested, let me know…and help me set a date.
As soon as the regular season opens we will return on an every other week basis at Falls Church, VA and Dupont FreshFarm markets.
December 5th, 2014 by Gretchen
About to head out for the Dupont Circle farmers market. Wear warm clothes and come brave the winds with us.
I have good things for presents: hand knit items we had used for display. They are all freshly washed and priced at just the yarn price plus $1. A DEAL! and that is pretty unusual from us. Also yesterday (with a rain day at home) I made some Solitude Wool gift certificates. You can have them in any amount.
I’ll also have honey…and a few Solitude Wool sheep greeting cards.