Icelandic sheep have amazing wool. They are very well adapted to living in the harsh climate of Iceland. The wool has two parts to it. The inner and very soft layer is called þel (thel) and the outer coarser layer is called tog. The þel keeps the sheep warm, whereas the tog sheds off rain and snow. The sheep are so well insulated that snow will not melt off their backs. In general the þel is used to make soft items like sweaters and shawls, and the tog is used to make things like socks.
The Icelandic wool (lopi) I have seen available in North America is made from both the þel and the tog twisted together into yarn and sold under the trademark Reynolds Lopi. In Iceland, this is the wool we use for socks, mittens and such. The wool that Icelanders use to knit sweaters is not twisted into yarn but comes right off the carding wheel and is not spun. You can get that kind of wool directly from Iceland, from a small wool processing place or you can make it yourself, from wool from a small farm like ours.
The sheep on this farm are shorn in mid-February and sometimes again in mid-August. The mid-August sheering does not always happen. It really depends on what else is going on at the Farm at that time. But when we do make that happen that wool is amazing. So soft, clean and lovely. The February wool is also very nice but it does have some hay in it. But it is otherwise clean because we give the sheep heavy bedding so they can stay very clean.
Selma has shorn the sheep herself, but found that the more sheep there were the less she felt up to it. It is a backbreaking job and she is not very fast at it, so she now hires professional sheep shearers. We are thankful to be able to call on a professional to shear all the sheep in just a few hours.
One of the past shearer told Selma, Icelandic sheep were his second most favorite sheep to shear. All other sheep are number one. The reason is that the Icelandic sheep never let their guard down. If he relaxed, they are on their feet and gone. So poor man could not relax into the shearing, but had to stay alert and remember that these are Icelandic sheep, not just any sheep. Selma feels proud of her sheep for that feistyness. Why should they become docile just because they have been immobilized by sitting on their butt. A sheep in general is totally immobile if it set on it’s behind. When you stop and think about it, it is totally strange for a sheep to be shorn. It is a way for us to get something from the sheep, but the sheep could not care less whether we get the wool or not. They are happy however, to be out of the wool, and spend the days after sheering hopping a lot.
We only sell wool in the grease. Most of the wool goes to Jorstad Creek, a yarn and fiber company in Olympia Washington. But often we have additional fleeces for sale. Please inquire by sending us an email.
Wool for sale
(All wool is sold as whole fleeces)
- Lambs Wool
- Ewes wool
- Rams wool
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for orders and availability.
We accept cash, checks and money orders at this time.
Orders are sent via US Postal Service. Check USPS.com
Chris: Loved spinning your long wool, it is so nice and clean. I made yarn for my wife for Christmas.
Melissa: The kids and I had so much fun felting the wool we got from you. It felted so easily.