Backstory - I've had an arapawa/gotland fleece sitting in my stash for a few years, from a flock in Tawa. I've always wanted to do that thing where you take the fibre all the way from shearing the sheep* through preparing and spinning the wool to making an item of clothing for myself.
A few weeks ago, I dug out the fleece and started on it, teaching myself to crochet in the process. I finished the item, and it looked hippyish enough that it needed a hood. Half way through the hood, I ran out of wool.
Joel suggested I do stealth shearing - sneak back to Tawa and shear the sheep for enough wool to finish my project. I figured buying a bit online would be easier and involve less running around paddocks at midnight and potentially getting shot for worrying.
Anyway, I went hunting for arapawa/gotland online and in my travels I accidentally slipped and bought some merino, polwarth and straight gotland fleeces in a variety of natural colours. Oops. I have a project in mind that involves playing with natural variations in coloured wool, so now it can be a really big project!
Pictured is the hippy thing I made from my own shearing on the left, and the wool that I'll finish it with on the right. I'll have to pick the darker bits out, but it's close enough. I'm stoked!
PS I think that the history of fibre and textiles is the history of civilisation, up to and including the fact that looms were the first computers. But I'm geeky like that.
* Even better if I bred the sheep myself. Working on that.