Making my sheep presentable! The horror of naked sheep is averted at last.
Over the past few months, I have been making naked sheep. To replace my missing sample sheep. I need to leave some of them in their unsightly naked appearance but I also need to have a few finished ones to show what variations can be made with the top coats too.
1-2 20g Woad died Locks on sale at one of the fibre festivals.
So last week I found the little bag of Romney x BFL locks, died with woad. This is a very light woaden blue and makes me think of the story about Ted Carson, a Toronto spinning teacher, taking cool-aid died lambs with him to demo in town. He had said that when he brought the colourful lambs back to the rest of the flock he would see cars suddenly brake to stop and look at the green, pink, purple and blue tinted sheep standing in his field. Ok, this could be fun!
I curled up in front of the computer, got set up with the game I was playing and pulled out the sheep. I finished off the ears and did a bit of final touch up of the understructure then added the eyes. I could not find the black so she got the dark opalescent beads. I sewed in the eyes from opposite sides and buried the knot and thread in the wool.
3-4 Naked sheep body with ears added
Next, I added the top coat of locks. I kept them tight to the body and not as drapey as I usually do. In this fleece, the tips and tails were both quite crimpy and didn’t take the dye as much as the middle section of each lock. The darker ends were the tips and the whiter ends were the butt ends, if you were curious. I let the forelock and the bottom wooly part of the legs be a bit looser. Now she looks almost right. What is she missing?
5-7 Sheep with the top coat added. She is looking for grass.
I know! It’s the bell and bow from a hazelnut chocolate Easter rabbit! (Not this year’s rabbit, who was milk chocolate and had a red ribbon and was eaten ears first Sunday afternoon.)
8 My Pictish sheep with her bell and ribbon
Now that I have a woad sheep I may need a woad covered Pictish shepherd to go with her. Hum, that could be fun. I will have to see if I can find any photo reference on the wonderful google. Google was not as helpful as usual.
Was it Tacitus who wrote about the frightening Picts, who painted themselves blue with woad and would not fight correctly with chariots? I did read Germanicus but can’t remember if it was there or another roman author who talked about the Picts. It may have been the Germans or the most northern Celts that didn’t fight correctly against chariots. University was a while ago so as long as I don’t have a sudden history test I should be ok. I do remember Hadrian tried to build a wall to keep them contained but most of the wall was looted for later building material. Yes I think I will need to make a Pictish shepherd to go with the sheep!