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Guest dyer for Daughter of a Shepherd

Posted by Julia Billings on

My dear friend Rachel Atkinson of Daughter of a Shepherd (for whom I make pouches in her beautiful Hebridean tweed) asked me early this year to participate in her Guest Dyer series and I was thrilled to be part of this lovely project, alongside friend and fellow dyer Helen of Wool Kitchen (and others coming up in future)! It was a joy to have the opportunity to dye Rachel’s Ram Jam base, whose gradient of natural shades is made from fleeces that would otherwise go to waste, including natural black from Hebridean, Zwartbles and black Texel, white from a mixture of BFL/Cheviot Cross, Texel Cross and various other mule crosses and even fleece from the naturally black and white coloured Badgerface sheep! From the raw fibre, to the scouring, spinning and skeining and even the delivery of the final yarn, every aspect of this yarn is from Yorkshire, something that Rachel, as a proud Yorkshire lass, is very proud of.


Rachel and I decided that a blue, dyed with indigo, would sit beautifully with all the sheepy shades of Ram Jam and, after some sampling and swatching, we came up with a deep, heathered blue with indigo highlights. It was a colour she immediately named Quink, which I, as an Australian, had no reference for so had to go and research! She was right- it IS the perfect name for this deep, inky shade…



A limited run of Quink will be available from Daughter of a Shepherd from 7pm this evening, Wednesday December 11. Although Ram Jam, as a woollenspun yarn, is super flexible in both gauge and application, it is particularly suited to colourwork and, paired with other natural shades of Ram Jam, would make a lovely Bouquet ScarfHawkshaw Pullover or Tundra Toque!


Whatever you might make with it, we really hope that you enjoy working with it!