Adventures in Yarn Farming: Four Seasons on a New England Fiber Farm

Adventures in Yarn Farming: Four Seasons on a New England Fiber Farm

by Barbara Parry


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A knitting book focusing on the sheep-to-shawl process by a well-known knitter, shepherd, and artisanal yarn producer.

Gain an insider's view on fiber farming and yarn craft, from sheep to skein, all told through the eyes of shepherd and textile artisan Barbara Parry. Follow her flock over the course of a year and discover all the facets of life with sheep: from shearing day and lambing season, to preparing fiber for yarn. Along the way you'll find projects for the fiber obsessed by top knitwear designers, essays on country life, and over 100 stunning photographs. With the growing locavore movement, the rising trend in sustainable farming, and the ever-increasing interest in crafting, this book is perfect for those who yearn for a closer connection to a rural lifestyle and who enjoy making things by hand.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781590308233
Publisher: Shambhala
Publication date: 11/12/2013
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 604,968
Product dimensions: 7.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

BARBARA PARRY raises sheep on her 220-acre Springdelle Farm in western Massachusetts. She and her husband, Michael, keep a flock of 77 sheep, goats, and llamas. Every year Barbara converts hundreds of pounds of her spring wool clip into high-quality yarn and handspinning fiber. She markets her yarns and fibers under her label Foxfire Fiber & Designs and has created a substantial presence, both online ( and at major sheep and wool festivals throughout the Northeast. She has worked collaboratively with several well-known designers in the industry. Barbara's diverse background in fiber arts, sheep farming, and yarn production makes her a sought-after speaker for fiber retreats and guild presentations. Barbara regularly chronicles farm life on her blog, Sheep Gal: Notes from a Shelburne Shepherd ( She is also the author of Teach Yourself Visually Hand-Dyeing (Wiley Publishing).

Table of Contents

Casting On
The Road to Springdelle Farm

Good Fibrations
Ides of March
Springdelle Jacket (project)
Lamb Watch
The Full Lamb Moon
Jammies for Lambies (project)
Troubleshooting Lambs
Lampedes and a Llama
Finding Fiddleheads

Cutting the Apron Strings
Grazing Days
The Kitchen Garden
A Summer Meal from the Kitchen Garden (project)
Lavender Harvest
Lavender Pillows (project)
Bridge of Flowers Sweater (project)
Fun with Tractors
Hay Day

At the Mill
The Zen of Dying
Dyeing and Hand Spinning a Self-Striping
Yarn (project)
Field and Sky Woven Tablet Cozy (project)
The Ram is Half the Sweater
Goats are Born Looking for Trouble
Dyeing, Combing, and Spinning Mohair (project)
Sundance Scarf (project)
New York Sheep and Wool Festival
In a Wild Place
Wildwood Cabled Pullover (project)

Gathering the Flock
Ice Storm
Winter Solstice
Solstice Hat (project)
Snowshoe Shepherd
Dip Dyed Yarn
Full Snow Moon Cowl and Mitts (project)
In the Sugar Bush
Sumac Mittens (project)
Binding Off
Guidelines for Safely Dyeing Yarn and Fiber
About the Designers and contributors
About the Author

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Adventures in Yarn Farming: Four Seasons on a New England Fiber Farm 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. I am an experienced knitter who lives and works in an urban area and has often thought of what it would be like to do exactly what Barbara and her husband are doing. She is a good writer who provides an honest look at the whole process. Each season has its own unique beauty, but make no mistake, all of it is hard work. She also includes some knitting patterns and recipes. I look forward to joining her yarn coop.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
krisjg1 More than 1 year ago
a well written, honest portrayal of life on a New England farm and the process of raising sheep for yarn. beautiful detailed and interspersed with knitting patterns and recipes to inspire your creativity. a lovely book!