Felted fleece rugs are totally “sheep friendly”. No sheep are harmed in the process of making them, hurray! They may look just like sheepskin rugs but if you turn one over, you will see the base of the rug is made entirely of wool, not a hint of hide in sight.
Making each rug is a labour intensive but enjoyable process. It takes me several days to make a rug as everything is done by hand, see how I make them here:
This rug is made from a beautiful Scotch Mule hog fleece. I was fortunate to get a bag of these fleeces from a friend of ours, Andy McQuaker who farms in the nearby village of Corsock.
Scotch Mules are just great little sheep! They are super hardy, are great mums, and have gorgeously long, curly wool. They’re a cross between the Scottish Blackface and Bluefaced Leicester, both of which have creamy coloured, long, flowing locks. Click here for further info on this lovely cross:
Being a “hog” fleece, the wool is of great quality – hogs are young “teenage” sheep who haven’t yet gone through the stresses and strains of lambing which can sometimes affect wool quality.
Rug measurements taken from the back: approx. 33 inches in length from top to bottom measured at the longest points, and approx. 25 inches across the middle at the widest part. These measurements don’t include the locks, the locks measure between 5 and 6 inches making the rug appear bigger when it is laid face up.
I really enjoy making rugs from Scotch Mule fleeces, they always turn into super pretty rugs with their long creamy curls and are incredibly soft to the touch.
I’m a huge fan of using homemade and/or organic products for everything around the house, including washing wool. This rug is washed in “Sonett” olive oil laundry liquid for wool and silk. It is then rinsed in spring water with a splash of our homemade apple cider vinegar with a few drops of organic lavender oil (as a moth repellent).
A little disclaimer: although I soak, wash and rinse each rug I make, (sometimes I’ll wash a rug several times over depending on how adventurous the sheep has been on her travels through the pastures and what she has collected on her fleece over the year), it’s likely you’ll still find little “meadow reminders” hiding away in the wool. Hopefully not too many though! I do go through each fleece after it’s been washed and dried and pick out any remaining “meadow bits”, but as you can imagine, it would be impossible to remove every single little seed.
Finally, if you’re wondering how to wash your rug yourself, please don’t worry, I include an info sheet of “woolly washing tips” with every rug I send out.