Jacobs have been my favourite sheep since I was a kid. Dad used to get free tickets for the Suffolk Show every year. The best place to visit was the Raptor Society who always had several owls tethered and sleeping outside their tent, plus some vicious looking hawks. They did falconry displays too, and one time the falcon took off after something small, furry, and not fast enough, and didn’t come back for three hours.
Second best place on the showground was the Rare Breed’s Society, they let you pet the sheep and they usually had Jacobs. I loved the massive horns on some of the rams and the smells of barn and hay. This was spun from undyed Jacob roving:
Jacob roving from Tannery Farm
264 yards, 4oz, sportweight
Wheel spun, Navajo plied
Three ply yarn looks fabulously better than two ply, I want everything three plied from now on. Which means I need to spin the singles 20% thinner to get the same yarn. I was aiming for a rustic yarn so I’m not too bothered about unevenness, but it’s mostly even. Evenness is my biggest challenge in spinning. Parts of it are over plied and still twisty even after washing and some skein abuse. It’s going to be a hat for me based on Halfdome for the raglan decreases, but long enough to cover my ears. Love the self-striping effect! It still smells a bit sheepy, and there was a lot of dirt in the water. It’s not the softest yarn I’ve spun but it is my favourite.
This is how I Navajo ply: I hold the loop apart with thumb and index finger, tension the other strand with the next two fingers and hold it in the middle of the loop. Then I let some twist build up before releasing it. Spinners, am I doing it right?