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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

London-Wul Fibre Arts

The days are shorter and the nights are cooler; time to begin knitting again.  To get started, I visited London-Wul Fibre Arts, on the outskirts of  Dieppe on the Melanson Road.  London-Wul is a fibre farm in New Brunswick Canada where animals are neither destroyed nor sold - without exception.   It is also a national award winning Fibre Arts Gallery, supply and equipment shop and home to the studio of Heidi Wulfraat.”
Heidi was tidying her dye shop, and customers were few at that moment, so she spent time with me discussing the patterns and needles I needed, as well as giving me a tour of her delightful array of yarns.
Being at London-Wul is a visual and tactile pleasure.  I love wandering and exploring the piles and bins of vibrantly coloured yarns, many created by Heidi herself, darks, brights, pastels, variegated.  I touch each one and revel in the textures, coarse, fine, lumpy, thick, thin, fuzzy… my fingertips caress. Blissfully, I imagine finished projects!

The shop’s walls are covered with Heidi’s fabric art, unbelievably finely detailed, a gallery of her talents.  I am contented, just to stand and stare and dream, to appreciate the textures, colours and designs.
Heidi is nothing if not enthusiastic about her work, her sheep, her wool and her own artistic growing edges.  She is supportive and keen to encourage anyone who is struggling along at basic levels of knitting, like me.  She patiently points out the best possible choices for making my mitts and hat, finds me patterns and discusses the merits of various weights of wool.
When I am there, I want to buy everything.  Of course, I cannot!  I appreciate that Heidi creates yarn from her own sheep, dying and spinning her own wool; wool that is of soft texture and delicate, variegated shades such that knitting with it is a total pleasure, an experience of creation and a visual and tactile thrill.  I love the way the colours slowly meld from dark to light and back again, and delight in the surprise of knitting as the patterns, colours and designs develop in the knitting.

            I love London-Wul!

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