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A Truly Colorado Sweater- 2023 Fibershed Project

For those of you who have not met me, my name is Erin Miller. I am a board member of Mountains & Plains Fibershed, as well as co-owner of Nerdy Sheep Fiber Works. I am a knitter, spinner, dyer, weaver, sheep shearer, and future mill co-owner-- but by day I am a librarian at a local jail. Other hobbies include watercolor painting, gardening, baking, and most importantly backpacking, hiking, rock climbing, and ice climbing.

2023 is the year of the Truly Colorado Sweater, sourced entirely from within my fibershed.

I've picked up 1200 yards of Clun Forest Yarn 2 Ply Aran from Left Hand Wool Company, and for each month of 2023 I'll be dyeing 100 yards, using only natural dye materials harvested from within a 150 mile radius of Mountains & Plains Fibershed.

I have selected Amy Christoffers Farmhouse Cardigan, to show off not only the beauty of wool, but the natural colors that can be obtained by native western plants.

As each skein is dyed, I will knit a new section of the sweater, showing off the subtle shift of colors as the months and seasons progress. The result, I HOPE will showcase natural dyes, and wool from heritage breed sheep in my local fibershed.

Clun Forest Ram

Here is my tentative list of dyes by the month, which is subject to change:

Jan- Ponderosa Pine Bark

Feb- Blue Spruce Needles/Twigs- Iron

Mar- Juniper Bark

Apr- Dandelion

May- Prickly Lettuce/ Iron

Jun- Aspen- Young

Jul- Willow Leaves

Aug- Chamisa- Rubber Rabbitbrush

Sept- Staghorn Sumac

Oct- Oak Bark/ Acorn/ Leaves

Nov- Dock Seeds/ Roots

Dec- Pine Needles

I will update 4 times throughout the process with a blog post:

Vernal Equinox- Mar 20, 2023

Summer Solstice- Jun 21, 2023

Autumnal Equinox- Sep 22, 2023

Winter Solstice- Dec 22, 2023

You can also follow along with the harvesting, dye process, and knit progress on my instagram @nerdysheep and @mountainsandplainsfibershed.

I’ll also be posting on Ravelry for those in the know. @nerdysheep

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Hi Erin, I would like to meet you. I am Cathy Bickell 303-499-3045 on 75th St. I raise Corriedale & Corriedale X Teeswater sheep. I also am A natural dyer. I belong to Handweavers of Boulder and started a Natural dye Group. Hope to hear from you.

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