These colorful primitive breeds have dual-coated, lower lanolin-content fleeces than most modern breeds, so they tend to shed debris and vegetative matter for cleaner raw fleeces. Their coats can be used together or separated to make anything from underwear(undercoat)
Shetland and Icelandic fleeces are very similar, but yet these primitive animals have lots of variation in their genetics that leads to a great deal of variation in the fleeces of both breeds, as well. Overall, Shetland fleeces tend to have less outercoat and are more fine and airy, so they need little or no tip-flicking, ie spin right off the animal. The finest Shetland fleeces are historically known for making super fine yarn for lace shawls that will fit through a wedding ring. On the other hand, Icelandics tend to have more outercoat, so they need more flicking of their ringleted tips as you spin the fiber. Because of the strong outercoat holding the fiber together, the Icelandic fleeces tend to be a little more ideal for making felted items like heavy-duty fabric or rugs and for separating out the coarser fiber for saddle blankets or strong embroidery yarn.
Much of Tramp Farm's wool is used to make entirely handmade knit/crocheted/
Tramp Family Farm Vikingsheepart Fleeces: $11/LB + Shipping
Visit www.gumbohighlands.com .
As a small family farm, their supply is very limited and fleeces go quickly. No reservations are taken; ie first come, first serve.
Visit http://www.icelandicsheep.com for a wealth of information on washing, spinning, knitting, felting, etc, these types of fleeces.
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Miles City, MT, source of primitive breed registered and commercial Scottish Highland Cattle and Shetland/Icelandic Sheep, horns, gourmet-quality/