Tuesday

Knee Deep in Wool ...

This week I have been, and will continue to be knee deep in wool ... I have skirted several of the spring fleeces, and are readying them for shipping out to process. I have so much beautiful fleece that I though I would send some out. I was able to find a wool processing mill right here in KY. so that is where it will go to be turned into roving. I will be sending out 6 fleeces, and poundage is 25 pounds after skirting.  The process will take over 8 weeks, so come January I will have a lot to add to my shop. Just a few more to bag and label for shipping.
 I always keep some aside for Santa beards.
I have to say, I have spun a lot of different kinds of wool, but I think Shetland is my all time favorite wool. Not because I have them, It just has a different kind of softness to it.
and beautiful long length
The girls will get there fall check up and worming and will be introduced back to the rams for the breeding season. Lambs should come at a perfect time next spring in April.I will hold back a few of the young girls and not breed them this fall but, allow them to get a little more pounds and age to them. Most of them were born in April last year so I feel that 6 months old is just toooooo young to breed.
A few of the girls ... they all have a nice breeding weight to them.
Ginger looks good and will be bred this fall.
 Indy, trying to get my attention by chewing on a leaf. She is jet black, and looks as though she will remain black. She is named Indy, as in Indy 500 cause as a newborn she was FAST as lighting!
Now that Annie season is over, and garden has been put to bed, hay is all stored, wood barn is full for the winter it is now time to start on those extra rooms.
My shop, is under going some work, and I have been thinking on how I want the walls and ceiling, but, first things first I have electric! In the future this will be a space that I will use for sewing, spinning and wool storage.
I have moved some of my things in there to work, and so I can get a feel for the space and how it will work, which better helps me figure out what it needs in the way of , walls, ceiling, shelving and so on.
I want to keep the ceiling open, if you look at the walls you will see they are just studs. Those will be insulated and then covered with white bead board, I think ...
Anyway, got to get back to my wool ... What project are you all working on this week? Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by the farm.

 Teri

Monday

All Good things ...

Can be made several different ways ... Over 2 years ago I did a tutorial for some primitive gingers. Well, that tut got out of hand so fast, so I had to rethink it ... and even then, after reposting another way to make them I still had more than my share of I want the secret recipe people, not asking, but demanding it! And still 2 years later, I still have people asking for it! Please, if you read nothing else in this post, please read this line. I am not, no matter what sad, sad story you give me, going to give it out. Sorry ... Really it is the age old story, one bad apple ... you all know the rest right?
That tutorial over two years ago started out as a gift to all my blogging buddies ... But alas, thanks to Pintrest, Primitive forums and FB I received request for the pattern from people, here there and everywhere. Still after two years, almost daily. So instead of  answering email, after email, after email, telling them that this pattern is free to followers of my site, I have decided to sell JUST the pattern. I am not doing this to get rich, I mean were else can you buy a pattern for $1.50? And  pay pal will take most of that money, so for me it is mere pennies. But, what this is for me, is a way to try to get a handle on this pattern. And maybe keep my inbox from flooding over! And I figured as long I was offering the pattern I would also show you yet another way to make these gingers ...
I used a heavy fabric, like a cotton drapery fabric. Trace on double fabric, sew on your trace lines, Cut around the sew line leaving about 1/4 inch, clip corners. Make a small slit in Ginger's back for turning fabric.
Turn right side out. Now comes the hard part ... PRESS with a HOT iron until flat, flat flat. Don't worry about the wrinkles, they will just add texture. Now paint with YOUR favorite color brown, I mix in cinnamon for that great texture, let dry or nuke, I always nuke my fabric. Make a heart and tie a bow!
Looks just like a real  gingerbread cookie!
Now onto the pattern, if you want to make the purchase, go to the patterns page scroll down to the picture of the ginger, and you will see a buy now. Once you make your purchase, the PDF file will be sent to the email address you paid with. File will be sent to your email within 24 hours or sooner.Please note, this pattern is not for resale, and can not be mass produced. Pattern will be for sale for a limited time only.
Have fun and thanks for stopping by the farm.

Teri

Tuesday

Mid October ...


Some times it feels like the months just fly by, as I am planning on doing x, y and z ... By the time I have the time for x and y,  z falls off the list and rotates to a list of things to do. For some reason this year has escaped me, I think what it comes down to, is so many things got put on hold for the business and then I got Bronchitis in June and then I was pretty sick again in September. So when this happens, there are things that just don't get done ... And now that I am starting to feel a bit better I have a lot of things yet to be done. A few things I have to play catch up on ... and then there are things that I need to do , just for my own. One of those things was to dye some yarn with Goldenrod, I had a very nice person request some, so I said yes of course ... I love the color and I enjoy my time gathering it  ... It really is just beautiful! And like many plants it has a timer on it ... So you kind of have to get it at just the right point. And I am so glad that it grows here on the farm.
here is the Goldenrod in the pot simmering ...
And the yarn simmering in the mordant.
Simmering, and soaking in the color.
Done and ready for my Etsy shop.
It is the same color as the Goldenrod growing on the farm ... a beautiful sunny yellow.
 I thought I would share a few fall shots around the farm ...
a little fall in the herb garden.
 And Barney, one of the farm cats has already claimed his spot in the stacked hay.
 Bittersweet is not even close to being ready, here in KY. it takes a lot longer for it to pop open. It is so worth the wait tho.
We have had so much rain and wind here, that there really is not to much left on the trees in the way of color. This one is out in the back of the house, soon I will be able to have a beautiful view of the surrounding ridges.
I think I have said this before, I am very lucky that my pastures are surrounded by woods, which makes for great shade in the summer for the sheep and beautiful views for me in the fall and winter.
the beauty just keeps going on, for what seems like miles.
my barn looks dwarfed by the size of those big big trees.
pretty oranges in this one ...
This is outback of my wood barn
I always feel like I am on top of the world this time of year. Being the last house at the end and top of a ridge makes you feel that way.
This is Hope she is the last of my very first Cheviot ewe Beth's offspring. Fifth generation.

A few of the girls grazing in the big pasture.
Mid October, and still playing catch up here ... All sheep are separated and will go in with their rams at the end of this month or beginning of next month. Before you know it, Thanksgiving will be here ... Wow, time sure does have a way of getting away from me ... Gotta run, have orders to ready for shipping out today. Thank you all for taking your time and stopping by the farm.


 Teri

Sunday

Gourd Crazy ... A Low Cost DIY ...

Gourds are still growing here on the farm....
 Can you see what this one is growing on top of ... yep, sweet Annie seeds ... all of this will stay right where it is and make a great cover for the seeds this winter.
Call me crazy, but I just love gourds, photo of last years gourds drying ...
Yes folks, as the post title says ... gourd crazy! My name is Teri and I am addicted to gourds. I love to grow them, dry them display them, but most of all I enjoy watching the beautiful bright orange flowers pop open as wide as they possibly can, and the vines and tendrils wind and twist, and the shapes of them as they growing and as they dry! I must confess, I have bags of them everywhere there is a spot. Told ya I was gourd crazy ... Although, hubby thinks I'm crazy in the gourd!
 I love to display them ... I love the textures and colors.
Photo of a gourd garland I made about 3 years ago ... I used dried gourds and Okra.
So, today, I wanted to show you my version of the primitive, dirty gourd, cluster, garland or whatever they are calling them. And, boy are they are getting all the money for them! Have you seen them?
Soooooo, here is my own primitive farmhouse dried gourd hanger.
A very cost effective DIY
Supplies
hemp twine or whatever you have
scissors
large tapestry needle
awl, small
raffia
and of course dried gourds
 select the gourds you will be using, they must not be mushy. I used 15-16 gourds that are between 4-6 inches long for my hanger.
 Take your awl, and place it firmly against the gourd where you want the hole to be, now twist in a back and forth motion, make sure you check often,this will not take long at all. Less than a minute.Most people think that you need a drill for this but as you can see you don't in fact it really is better way to make sure you don't crack the gourd.
 This is what it will look like ...
Now take you sharp needle and stick it through the hole you just made. Making sure that the needle is LEVEL push slightly until it just poke through the other side.
 Once it is through, take your awl and place the tip of it where the needle made the mark. Moving back and forth just like before, make the hole the same size as the other side. The needle should go right through.
 Take a piece of hemp and thread the needle, this will make it quicker and easier. I cut my first piece of twin about 3feet long. One you have the needle and twine through tie it in a double knot.
 Once you have one gourd tied on, now do the same thing on the other end of the twine, so when done you will have two gourds on one piece of twine at each end.
 Once I got three or so made at various lengths, I then hung the twin on a peg so I could arrange the gourds and stagger them how I wanted them. To do this all you will need to do is pull on one of the gourds and the other will go up ... Like an old pulley system ...
 This photo shows what I just explained above ... when they are hung you are able to make the adjustments you need. You may have to untie one end of the gourd and retie it higher.
 When you have all the adjustments made, gather all the loops, being careful not to move anything and tie in a knot.
 Take a few strands of raffia, any color you like, I added some orange to mine as I wanted a fall color and tie in a knot over the other knot ... weave the raffia in and out through the gourd hanger.
Finished! And as you can see by the dried chili's hanging next to it, I am not new to making dried garlands,clusters or hangers, that one is over 7 years old...
Enjoy!
This little project took no time at all from start to finish. I know not everyone has gourds laying around, but you can buy them this time of year pretty inexpensively compared to the finish product.So go get some gourds and give it a try.And thanks for stopping by the farm. 

Teri

Tuesday

Five Years Ago ...

Five years ago, I hit the enter key to launch White Sheep Farm On September 26, 2009. One of my very first posts was about my homegrowns ... And only 2 comments were left ... Actually, my first week and month of posts were about my farm and homegrowns. But was told by a group of people on ETSY that my blog would never fly, and I needed to sell myself and my items.I listened for awhile, but never felt very good about selling myself or my product. I still, after all this time have a very hard time in doing just that ...
So, I switched gears, if I sold things I did, if I didn't well, that was okay too. I found this Sweet Annie post, and thought you all might be interested in how I started with sweet Annie. I have been growing, harvesting and selling her for six wonderful years, to hubby's dismay, you see he is highly allergic to her. I still love to talk about the farm, my sheep, garden, wool, spinning and crafting.I am so glad that I did not listen to those who told me my blog would never fly. I don't think I ever wanted my blog to fly, I just want it to glide along.
So, just want to give a big thank you to all who have been following me from the start and to those who have just started following, welcome and thanks for stopping by the farm. 

Teri

Hay! Happy Fall ...


 Good morning,
I guess I 'm off by a day but, Happy Fall Y'all anyway. As always it has been a very busy year here at the farm ... even more so this year with the addition of hubby's business.
Anyway, if you recall his shop came with 7 acres of land. And that land is beautiful pasture land , that has been used for cutting hay for quite a long time. So as the new owners of this land we cut a deal with the farmer who has been cutting this land for years. So this year all my hay is organic! Something I have been wanting for quite a few years now. And it also cost me zero dollars out of pocket! And the part that I like is that I don't have to use any land here at the farm.
Here is some of it all loaded down on the trailer.
 And the last of my fresh Sweet Annie went out yesterday ... So to all of those who purchased this year a big thank you! And to those who did not quite make the cut off date, as said please inquire earlier next year. Or place you order a year in advance, like most of my customers do.
Update 10/4/2014
Any Annie that I have left is now listed in my Etsy shop.
.Please click on the word Etsy and it will take you directly to my shop.
 Just a few rows of Annie drying, I have added more rows in the barn. My barn has never smelled so good.
 And my Limelight Hydrangeas are just perfect now, I have dried a few dozen of them, I also made a very EASY wreath for my dining room ...
 Love the colors, that the Limelight puts out ... Beautiful!
 Anyway, things are moving along here at the farm, most all wood for the season is stacked in the wood barn. We still have several more rick to get. The sheep's hay is under cover, rams have been separated from the ewes.All my herb beds have been cut back, all Sweet Annie is hanging to dry. And my stash that I keep for seeds is drying out. The mornings are getting cooler, and the leaves are just starting to show some of their color. The peach tree leaves are blowing into the pasture for the sheep to nibble on ... The bird feeders are filled, and have had several visitors on these cool mornings. I can't think of one thing that I don't like about this season. Have a great fall week and thanks for stopping by the farm. 

Teri
Supplies to make wreath ...