Hello There! My name is Deanna Rivera. I'm excited to contribute to this blog and give you a peak at our work and vision for Homegrown 'till Heaven. Our farm is a small, sweet corner of heaven here in Port Angeles, WA. We have for many years been dreaming of starting up a family owned sheep business, that every family member can contribute to, whether it be working with the machines or all the way down to knitting from simple hat patterns.
Our farm contains many critters like horses, sheep, pigs, dogs, cats and our friendly bunny. Our main focus will be on our small sheep flock. With our sheep we use everything we can get from them. Our flock is a mixture of breeds. We started with one pregnant Icelandic ewe we call 'Maw'. Since the first we have dabbled in cross-bred lambs mixing the original Icelandic with Wensleydale and Polwarth.
A few years ago, we branched out in to the world of pure-bred, conservation sheep called Romeldale and CVM (California Varigated Mutant). Between the Polwarth and this new conservation breed, we hope to raise the finest wool available in the Pacific Northwest. Our dream is to have varied colors and shades of fiber to offer.
Like I said before, we have been dreaming for many years. And now we want to start a wool processing business. Wouldn't it be great to go from field to fashion? Having this mill we will be able to process wool a lot faster than by hand. ( We've been doing it all before by hand machines here at our home.) Right now there are no local mills that are accepting new customers in our area.
Don't know what a wool mill is? Well, I am so excited to explain the process to you. A wool mill is a factory with many machines that are used for processing your wool. How's it done? It goes through different sections, starting at washing to picking all the VM (VM is Vegetable Matter) then it goes to the carding process. This takes longer than what you think. A carding machine has a round prickly wheel that you drive the wool through and brushes the fibers so they all are one continuous blend. After it is carded, the fibers are directed into the form of either a bat or roving. Roving is making the brushed fiber into a one to two inch wide continuous loose rope so that it can be spun. This is another process that takes lots of patience and time to get to what you want your outcome to be.
With our home-processed yarn we make beautiful hats and sell them. All of our items come from our sheep. All of this takes LOTS of patience and time, but in the end it helps with our business. So this is who we are how we came to start our wool processing business. If you have any questions, or would like to know more about us.
Visit our website at www.homegrowntillheaven.com or our facebook page Homegrowntillheaven.