Starting a flock with wool in mind

Sue Blacker's picture
8 November, 2020 - 16:00 | Sue Blacker

So here are some white sheep - but that's about the only thing they have in common - they are different sizes, have very different fleeces and also personalities.  So their wool will be very different, as will their care.

When I say “wool in mind” I really mean yarns, and this means hand knitting or crochet yarns or weaving or rug yarns, usually for small-scale or craft production.

So what we do at The Natural Fibre Company is turn a very basic raw material into a more usable raw material – it’s finished by us but not yet a finished product.  We also take the mess and hard work out of preparing wool for hand spinning or felting by sorting, scouring and carding wool.

Meet our lovely stockists!

Sonja Bargielowska's picture
20 January, 2018 - 12:10 | Sonja Bargielowska


Here at Blacker we thought it was about time to give our lovely stockists some love, find out more about them below!


Name: Isla Davison - now retired but a lovely person and we have retained this item for her views

Company name: BritYarn – United Kingdom - now closed

Why did you open a yarn shop?  Sometimes life takes an unexpected change of direction. I was made redundant and quite a few people, knowing my love of knitting and yarn, suggested I should open a yarn shop.  Initially I thought it was a crazy notion as I never imagined running my own business. However, it set an idea growing, and that, combined with my passion for British yarn, became BritYarn!

Blacker Brushwork - Our 12th Birthday Yarn

Sonja Bargielowska's picture
18 August, 2017 - 12:10 | Sonja Bargielowska


One of the joys of having our own mill, is that it gives us the freedom to experiment and try new things.  For the last two years we've celebrated our birthday in September by creating a limited edition - one of a kind - yarn, and this year is no exception.  Like all our yarns the development of Brushwork was an organic process, which began with the fibre. 

Glistening Gotland

Sonja Bargielowska's picture
26 July, 2017 - 15:39 | Sonja Bargielowska


Here at Blacker Yarns we try not to have favourites amongst the sheep breeds, but Gotland sheep do have a rather special place in our hearts. Perhaps because they’re the sheep Sue Blacker herself keeps?

We’re really excited to be launching a brand new colour palette in our 100% Gotland DK yarn on August 9th, and thought this would be a great opportunity to talk about this very special breed in more detail.

Sheep and Art

Sue Blacker's picture
23 July, 2017 - 16:51 | Sue Blacker


Images courtesy of The Saatchi Gallery

At the Mill we have been thinking about art - for reasons which will become very clear in the near future!

So we have been hunting around for some sheep in art… please do follow the links to see these lovely things in greater detail, and remember all artists need patrons!

A current favourite of Sue’s, as shown above and also of the Saatchi Gallery, is David Smith. A shepherd’s son from Shropshire, his images of a shepherd and colourful sheep are very engaging and beautifully structured into the paintings.

The Linen Journey

Sonja Bargielowska's picture
19 July, 2017 - 14:00 | Sonja Bargielowska


Lyonesse DK in Serpentine, Citrine and Aquamarine

We use linen in our Lyonesse yarn range – it adds great drape, crispness and strength to a yarn, but have you ever wondered how linen comes into being?

Linen comes from the flax plant (Linum usitatissimumi), which is one of the oldest cultivated plants in human history – currently thought to have been used for the past 9,000 years!  Growing annually, flax is ready to harvest around one hundred days after planting, sprouting up to three feet tall. The pale blue flowers are visible for one day only, causing a flourish in May/June. The variety used for fibre production is taller, making longer fibres for yarn production.

Introducing our new BFL laceweight colour palette

Sonja Bargielowska's picture
5 July, 2017 - 14:01 | Sonja Bargielowska


The Bluefaced Leicester is a noble breed, originating from selective breeding in the early twentieth century by Robert Bakewell, specifically hand-picked for their “blue faces”, referring to their very dark blue, almost black skin. The sheep themselves are friendly in nature, while their Roman noses provide an air of aristocracy. 

The Colours of Summer: variations on a theme

Sue Blacker's picture
28 June, 2017 - 12:49 | Sue Blacker


Our popular Polzeath Cardigan is worked in a combination of 4-ply Lyonesse wool-linen blended yarn and St. Kilda laceweight yarn.  The original for our photoshoot was worked in Onyx Lyonesse with the pale natural St. Kilda.  We saw a lovely version of Polzeath at Wonderwool, worked in Lyonesse Aquamarine with the pale natural shade of St. Kilda.  You can also make a really rich dark version using Onyx or Haematite Lyonesse, or possibly Serpentine, with the dark natural St. Kilda, or equally extend the contrast and use a warmer, softer peachy Tourmaline, or the Amethyst or Moonstone with the dark St. Kilda.

We have a lovely limited edition range of hand dyed St Kilda from The Knitting Goddess and the soft summery pastels in our updated Lyonesse shades, which tone wonderfully together! 

Creating a new yarn range: Samite

Sue Blacker's picture
4 March, 2017 - 10:55 | Sue Blacker


As many of our avid readers will know, we have been working on a new Blacker yarn range, being launched this month!   This is a permanent addition to our ranges, designed to complement the others, providing a further range of textures and fabrics, a luxurious feel and adding to our colour palettes.   The colour cards are available right away and the full launch is on 23rd March, 2017.


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Blacker Yarns

enquiries@blackeryarns.co.uk | +44 (0) 1566 777 635


The Natural Fibre Company

enquiries@thenaturalfibre.co.uk | +44 (0) 1566 777 635