The Livestock Conservancy has initiated a wool-oriented rare-breed project that warms my heart every time I come in contact with suppliers and fiber folk who are participating in it. Called Shave ‘Em to Save ‘Em (also known as #SE2SE), it encourages people to discover rare-breed wools and to use them. It also provides incentives for producers to up their game in promoting their animals’ fibers.
I’ve been advocating for and teaching workshops on and writing about and using rare-breed wools for more than three decades. It’s SO MUCH FUN to see large-ish numbers of other people getting excited about them all at once.
There’s a Facebook group called “Shave ‘Em to Save ‘Em.” There’s a Ravelry group. There’s information at The Livestock Conservancy’s site. There’s a lot of enthusiasm and camaraderie, and it’s just getting going.
If you’re a fiber person, whether you start with fleeces or already-spun yarn, you could have some fun with this and expand your horizons and support a lot of good causes (every individual shepherd and The Livestock Conservancy’s whole mission). Check it out!
Meanwhile, I’m researching and writing about the most recently recognized rare sheep breed, the Florida Cracker. It was distinguished from the larger population of Gulf Coast Native sheep in 2013, well after the development time for the Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook and the Field Guide to Fleece, so it’s not included in either of those volumes. I’ll be teaching that fiber at an upcoming Explore 4 retreat.
Are we having fun yet? Well, yes we are. And the party’s open to everyone who’s interested!