Our rare North Ronaldsay wool comes all the way from the Shetland Isles and we have hand sorted, washed, carded and hand spun itl on beautiful traditional spinning wheels. The wool is lovely and soft but does have the characteristic hairy feel of the hardy North Ronaldsay sheep. A beautiful warm brownish grey and knitting to the equivalent of a DK.
The North Ronaldsay is a tiny, ancient breed thought to have been brought by the Vikings to the Orkney Islands. Most of these sheep today still live and graze on North Ronaldsay. In 1832 a wall was built around the island to confine the sheep to the beaches in order to maintain the grazing. Over time the breed evolved to suit this environment, and now prefers seaweed over any other food.
North Ronaldsay sheep come in a range of colours both within the single sheep and across the flock, ranging from white to dark grey and also browns and fawns. Their fleece is excellent for hand spinning and the sheep have been mainly kept for their wool. Their fleece has a double coat of fine wool with coarse hairs which, when spun together make a lovely traditional yarn.