Daughter of a Shepherd’s ‘Drover Sock’ Is the Head of the Herd

Daughter of a Shepherd’s ‘Drover Sock’ Is the Head of the Herd

Today is the day! Daughter of a Shepherd is launching their first sock yarn today and it is a truly beautiful contribution to the long tradition of sock knitting. Come see what all the fuss over Drover Sock is about.

Daughter of a Shepherd Drover ©Rachel Atkinson

Is there anything better than a nice, sturdy sock yarn? It’s one of those knitting staples that never goes out of style. Trusty and reliable, yet comforting and warm, handmade socks have a way of bringing you back to the whole reason humans started knitting in the first place.

A British sheep farmer with his flock. Daughter of a Shepherd is committed to using wools sourced in the UK. ©Rachel Atkinson

Those of you who have been around for a while will know how special Daughter of a Shepherd proprietor Rachel Atkinson is to us here at Loop. A former Loopette herself, she has been an important part of our community since she started working in the shop more than 10 years ago! We have been so inspired by her quest to put the product of the British wool industry to good use and her commitment to producing fully traceable yarns in collaboration with shepherds, mills, and all the other folks who are so integral to the production of yarn.

Rachel has wanted to launch a sock yarn since she first launched Daughter of a Shepherd, and one of the silver linings of lockdown is that it gave her an opportunity to work on one in collaboration with John Arbon Textiles. The result is a yarn has all the rustic beauty you’ve come to expect from Daughter of a Shepherd with a higher twist and a pinch of nylon to make it perfect for socks and other hard-wearing items. This is the first time Daughter of a Shepherd has blended nylon into a yarn, and the results are just perfect.

Daughter of a Shepherd Drover in Whernside (top), Ingleborough (middle), and Pen-y-Ghent (bottom) ©Rachel Atkinson

True to Daughter of a Shepherd’s core values, the wool is all sourced from British wool producers, with Hebridean fibres from Yorkshire and Zwartbles and Exmoor Blueface from Exmoor, near John Arbon Textiles where the wool was milled. The wool is undyed, but by blending the three wools in different proportions, Rachel was able to achieve three gorgeous colours with incredible richness and depth. The darkest, Whernside, mixes Hebridean and Zwartbles fibres for a dark brown-grey with almost ochre undertones. Ingleborough and Pen-y-Ghent are mid-grey and light grey blends of Zwartbles and Exmoor Blueface.

Rachel has already used the yarn to knit a few pairs of socks, and we’re so lucky that she’ll be releasing a few sock patterns to celebrate the launch over the coming weeks. Rachel says she’s also looking forward to making other accessories such as mittens, gloves, and hats where the extra oomph of this yarn may come in handy. But this yarn is good for much more than just socks and accessories — Rachel is also looking forward to putting the three shades to good use for colourwork, and a few of our Loopettes are eyeing it up for sweaters. We’re just thrilled to have this yarn in the shop and we can’t wait to share it with you. Check out Drover Sock on the website or come into the shop to chat about it!

Knitting SOS

Our Knitting SOS sessions will get you through you through whatever has you stumped!

Stop by this Sunday for our first Knitting SOS session! This series of drop-in mornings is designed to get you un-stuck on whatever you’re currently struggling with, whether you’ve reached a bit of pattern you’re having trouble reading or you dropped a stitch 20 rows ago and only just noticed. There is no need to book, though if you’re looking for more in-depth help with techniques like brioche, complex cabling, fisherman’s rib, or Baltic braids we ask that you email us a few days before so Loopette Arielle can be prepared to assist you. Knitting SOS runs from 10:30-11:30 am on 31 July, 4 September, 2 October, and 6 November.

Autumn Harvest Stitch Markers

Autumn Harvest Stitch Marker Sets at Loop

Summer may still be in full swing, but autumn will be here before you know it — and we have just the thing to get you in the mood for all your cosy seasonal crafting. The new collection of Autumn Harvest Stitch Marker Sets bring all the joys of the cooler months to life. Pumpkins, apples, acorns, and pinecones are all emblematic of the season, and now they can adorn your latest work in progress. Handmade in California using Czech glass, these adorable stitch markers bring festive flair to your needles!

Pre-order PomPom Issue 42

PomPom Quarterly issue 42

PomPom Quarterly is headed back to the shelves this August with a bumper crop of maximalist designs celebrating colour, texture, and patterned knit and crochet to the max! The result is an issue featuring 11 patterns full of big textures and bold colourwork, plus all the wonderful articles and interviews we always look forward to from PomPom. Pre-order your copy today!

Handmade Ejiko Kokeshi Dolls and Toys

Ejiko Kokeshi dolls and toys at Loop London

That was fast! These beauties sold out almost as quickly as they arrived! But fear not, we’ll have more of these whimsical handmade Japanese wooden toys and treasures back in the shop soon.

Have a crafty weekend!

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