ABOUT MERINO, YARNS
AND MY WORK.
IT ALL STARTED WHEN...
For my 23rd birthday, Robert took me to Morehouse Farm to look at Merino sheep. On the 10 hour drive, he reminded me, over and over, that we were just going to look.
The first ram we saw was Peppino, who wasn't for sale, and our day-trip became extended so Robert could persuade Morehouse to part with Peppino and five ewes. That was the start of Wind Dancer Merinos, hand-spinning, hand-weaving, creating one-of-a-kind garments, doing studio tours, dyeing for Koigu, starting our current business, and the journey continues.
We believe that affability, availability and accountability are the foundations of a great business and we are committed to those objectives. We believe, as well, in exceeding expectations, both in product and service. And we believe in the importance of enhanced experience, whether that’s in interactions with us, with the stores that carry our yarn, with designers working with our yarn, and, of course, with knitters, needlepointers, crocheters, together celebrating a passion we all share for yarn.
ALWAYS A COMFORTABLE TEMPERATURE
Merino fibres are so fine that air is captured between them. This air insulates against both cold and hot weather, naturally regulating the wearer’s body temperature.
EASY TO CARE FOR
Merino yarn is the perfect fabric for today’s busy lifestyles. When it’s been superwashed, it‘s easily machine washable at low temperatures, though we always encourage air-drying on a towel. Like cotton, merino yarn doesn’t restrict air flow to and from the body.
Merino yarn is soft, not itchy, has unique thermo-regulating capabilities, and does not smell.
Merino yarn keeps sweat away from the body. This means bacteria doesn’t have time to build up and create body odour.
PROTECTION FROM THE SUN
Merino yarn offers a high level of protection against harmful UV rays.
ELASTIC BUT NOT CLINGY
The natural crimp in Merino fleece means Merino yarn has a natural elasticity which transfers to finished knitted projects.
Garments made from Merino yarn require next to no ironing and are resistant to creases and wrinkles.
A GREENER OPTION THAN SYNTHETIC FIBRES
Merino Sheep grow their fleeces grazing on, and naturally fertilizing pastures. Garments are both fire-resistant and biodegradable. Compare that with oil-based synthetic garments that don’t breathe, aren’t biodegradable and are a fire hazard.
THE COLOURWAYS I PRODUCE.
Robert has always said to visitors wanting to see the dye studio ...
‘If I show you I have to kill you’.
Well, how I dye isn’t a big secret, as these photos will show. I use both dye pots and dye pans to produce semi-solid colourways and only dye pans to produce stippled and variegated colourways.
The quality of the water I use is strategically important, so we have a water treatment system in place that allows me to manipulate the chemistry, the pH, and the temperature.
Air temperature and atmospheric pressure are also important, but that I can’t do much about, except look for something interesting to possibly present itself on such days. The dyes I use aren’t a big secret.
How I manipulate them is where the real fun begins. What I select and how I apply them to create a new colourway is a creative process much like an author working on a novel, where the story takes on a life of itself and the author is trying to keep up with what the brain is doing, engaging, almost like with a dance partner, rehearsing, trying something new, practicing, perfecting, performing, always engaging.