In preparation for choosing a wool for the reproduction of Herbert Wheeler’s knitted gloves, I’ve been knitting up a few test swatches using a locally produced wool, a Huron County Arcott.
The sport-weight wool is a medium grade with a tendency to create a natural nap on the surface after wet finishing, according to Deborah Livingston-Lowe, experienced weaver, textile designer and owner of Upper Canada Weaving.
Upper Canada Weaving was founded in 2010 by Deborah to reproduce 19th century Ontario textiles such as coverlets, rag carpets and linens.
I can tell you, fellow knitters, that Huron Arcott, sourced from a Brussels-area farm and purchased through Upper Canada Weaving, is an interesting fibre to work with and I’m totally enjoying this test phase.
Arcott is a sheep breed developed in Canada about 50 years ago. There are two main types of Arcott: Rideau and Canadian. The wool for these swatches comes from Canadian Arcott sheep. Canadian Arcotts were the result of a cross breeding program that included Ile de France and Suffolk to produce a new breed with strong meat characteristics. The fleece quality is soft and lustrous.
The next step in the testing is… you guessed it! More knitting! Ta-dah! And isn’t that lovely?
Thanks for reading!
- If you’d like to learn more about Upper Canada Weaving, please visit: https://www.uppercanadaweaving.com/
- For more about the different sheep breeds, check out: https://wool.ca/