We shear it, wash it, card it, dye it, spin it and knit it into beautiful, one-of-a-kind sweaters, hats, and scarves. Each unique piece of clothing created not only provides the warmth and comfort of the finest woolen fibers but is also an article of wearable art.
From my first interest in spinning which progressed from learning on a drop spindle to eventually getting a wheel, I have continued to produce yarns and create clothing designs. From the original “Kit to Knit” which includes everything needed to complete a hat all in one bag, to my first sweater production of all natural design, I have added colors and variations. I dye the wool here on the farm. Some sweaters are hand painted. Buttons are selected from a variety of artists.
My aunt taught me to knit when I was 11, basic stuff. As I grew my knitting interest grew. Where wool comes from, how it's made, etc. In 1985 a good friend and great artist, Jackie Fischer, thought I would like the idea of spinning yarn. She introduced me to the spinning-wheel and gave me my first lesson and wheel. I found I liked to spend a lot of time doing this and had lots of yarn - too much yarn. SamSpun was born. A "Kit to Knit" was my first retail project, everything needed to complete a hat all in one bag . From there, I inherited my first ewe and lamb and created my own source of wool. Through the following years my flock has grown and my designs have gone beyond but still include the Kit.
Producing comfortable, useful, whimsical durable, beautiful, wearable hat and sweater designs has been my goal. I use wool and buttons that either I produce, or have been produced by another artist. I've been juried into West Virginia's Tamarack, awarded a grant from West Virginia Arts and Humanities, given a gallery spot at the local Ice House Co-op Gallery and worked with and for Appalachian by Design.
In Hampshire County West Virginia, my husband Joe and I manage a flock of 10 Coopworth ewes known for their multiple births and good mothering instincts as well as good quality meat, and wonderful, lustrous high yield fiber.