Madder Fingering

Beautiful wool/mohair heavy fingering weight yarn individually dyed with dried and ground Madder roots right here on the farm.

The Yarn

  • 70% Shetland/Cormo Wool
  • 30% Mohair
  • 3 ply heavy fingering
  • ~408 yards/4.4 oz (125 g)

The Natural Dye

  • Mordanted yarn dyed in a Madder (Rubio cordifolia) bath
  • Dried and ground roots of the plant are simmered and then strained out to create this dye bath.
  • Mordanted yarn then added and simmered in the bath.

Washing

  • Hand wash or gentle machine cycle
  • warm/warm small load
  • inside out in sized delicates bag is good practice (not too loose, not too snug)
  • no bleach
  • dry flat

This is Beauregard, whose fleece forms the base of this Madder fingering weight natural dyed yarn. His mother, Beaulagh, is a Shetland x Cormo Ewe and his father, Chas, is a purebred Shetland Ram who hails from the home of the original North American breed rescue flock of Colonel G.D. Dailley, the first person granted permission to import the rare Shetland Sheep directly from the Shetland Isles to Canada.

Beauregard is a Wether, so his only job is to grow beautiful fleece. His fleece is processed at Wellington Fibres, a short drive from the farm. There it is blended with 30% mohair from the mill’s own her of Angora Goats. It is spun and plied with a good twist into a 3 ply sock yarn.

I dyed these One of a Kind skeins in small individual Madder dye baths of different strengths, giving different finished shades of yarn. This Madder, R. cordifolia, is also known as Indian Madder or Common Madder and is widely cultivated in many Asia, Europe and Africa. It was most extensively cultivated from antiquity until the mid nineteenth century when cheaper synthetic dyes were developed.

Madder is still cultivated for use by artisans and is used in some traditional eastern medicines, particularly in India and Tibet. The dye compounds reside in the roots of the plant.The roots are harvested when the plants area a few years old, then dried and chopped/ground for use in dye baths.

Beauregard, a Shetland x Cormo Wether