Ethical Yarn Directory

What makes a ‘Real Good Yarn’? This ethical yarn directory has been compiled as a result of conversations with suppliers, recommendations and online research. It details yarn suppliers who take extra steps to care for animals, people and the environment. I don’t audit the suppliers and there’s no standard certification process. I suspect that as I learn more about the ethics of the world of wool and yarn that the listings will change. I certainly hope that a lot more suppliers of ‘real good’ yarn will be added.

I am currently offering a FREE Premium Listing to suppliers who are taking extra steps to care for their animals, the planet and/or the people involved in the production of their yarns. A Premium Listing allows for them to add their ‘real good’ credentials as well as photos to their listings

If you have any specific questions or want to find out more about a particular yarn then please contact the supplier directly. If you know of suppliers that I should add to the directory then please let me know.

I hope you enjoy your exploration of Real Good Yarns.

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Bowsden, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland, United Kingdom TD15 2TG

Here at Whistlebare producing yarn is entirely a family affair. Every stage of the process is in our hands from selecting the livestock to labelling the last skein of yarn. When you buy natural yarn from Whistlebare you know that it has been produced with the utmost care; both for its quality and beauty, and its concern for animal welfare and environmental impact.

On our small family farm in North Northumberland we keep pedigree flocks of Angora Goats, for their fine mohair fleece and Wensleydale Sheep for their high lustre longwool. Every attention is paid to our animals' care from planting mixed swords of grass and herbs, keeping their hooves neatly trimmed, patrolling 'maternity' through the night at kidding / lambing time and housing them in thick straw beds through the cold winter months. Any feed that is required in addition to that grown on the farm is sourced from our local mill.

Equal care is taken in the process of producing top quality natural yarns. Our mohair and wensleydale fleeces are scoured, blended and worsted spun in Yorkshire. The mill that we use is in its third generation of family ownership. We ply our yarn into 4ply, double knit and aran weights and then return it to the farm to be dyed by hand.

As well as our Yeavering Bell yarn we have two other hand dyed yarns at Whistlebare. Cuthberts Sock is a no nylon sock yarn made from our mohair and wensleydale, and Cheviot Marsh is a lovely woollen spun lambswool from Cheviot and Romney Marsh lambs that live on the Cheviot hills a few miles from Whistlebare.

If you are visiting Northumberland do come to see us. The Studio at Whistlebare is open on Wednesdays and Fridays from 10.30-3pm and at other times by arrangement - email or text Alice on 07775 501068 to organise. As well as visiting the studio you can come to our day knitting retreats at the farm where you can meet all the animals, have wonderful homemade cakes and a delicious lunch, and of course do lots of knitting. See website for details.
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