Nan raises 1200 superfine “Saxon” merinos just south of Oatlands, in the middle of Tasmania, and the wool that her sheep grow is turned into hand knitting yarn by a company in NZ—Design Spun. Her farming focus is on the ethical treatment of the animals and the landscape in which they graze. Her trademark in a production sense is a concept known as “nutritional wisdom”, in which sheep are given the opportunity to graze a wide diversity of native as well as exotic plants—and thereby learn about the nutritional and self-medicating benefits of different forages. Because nutritional wisdom is in part a learned behaviour—knowledge passed by mothers to their babies—Nan runs all the sheep in a single large mob, keeping all family groups together for their entire lifetimes. In order to foster the diversity of plants that this system relies on, Nan maintains a fairly low stocking rate, encouraging diversity through abundance.
Nan's beautiful, super-soft White Gum Wool yarn comes in 3 weights: 4-ply, 8-ply and a chunky bouclé. We are so proud to offer White Gum Wool as part of the Augustbird range. Browse our current in stock yarns below.
Check out Nan's website whitegumwool.com.au to learn more about White Gum Wool and keep up to date with what Nan is up to.
A good deal of Sally's design inspiration comes from the natural environment. At one time, she planned a career in Wilderness Management. But the prospect of compulsory science subjects for three years at Uni left no room for her beloved history and literature. Some juggling of disciplines saw Sally graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in 2004. She has followed her heart into further creative pursuits ever since.
Fascinated by the history of our interaction with the earth and its seasons, Sally has found in knitwear the perfect amalgamation of beauty and practicality. Rebecca's colourways, paired with beautiful White Gum Wool, are Sally's favourite medium to work with. She and Rebecca share a love for fine tea, books, knitting and op-shopping.
Sally's beautiful knitting patterns can be purchased here.
Alicia has been knitting seriously for three years (after being taught as a child by her late grandmother, Shirley) and designing for a little over a year. Her style is decidedly East-Coast fresh, complimented by modern lines. She aims for casual-cozy.
As a stay at home mom and a homeschooler, Alicia is very scatterbrained and messy. She loves to meet new and different people. Her favorite place to do that is the Plum Dandi group she has on Ravelry with Melissa Schaschwary, her best friend (& a very talented designer!).
Our Rich DK base is her favourite, in the Two Little Plums colorway.
Her favorite activities are miles of stockinette, hiking with her kids, having quiet time with the Bible, and anything with her husband. She loves to learn new things and is currently learning how to play basketball, as well as attempting to keep the house clean regularly. The vacuum is broken, so things aren't looking good...but there's always knitting!
Check out some of Alicia's beautiful patterns below. And be sure to follow her blog to keep up to date with Two Little Plums news.
Melissa lives in the Midwest USA with her husband, her 2 little girls and 2 small dogs.
Melissa began designing in 2009 and has continued to enjoy the exciting, ever changing path her work has taken her on. She loves to incorporate hints of nature, romance and home into all of her pieces in the hopes of inspiring those who knit from her designs.
We are very lucky to have Melissa design some gorgeous patterns especially for Augustbird yarn.
Melissa's new website is dandiliongirldesigns.com
Georgie Hallam, our favourite Aussie pattern designer, she started out designing knitting patterns for her barbie dolls when she was little, jotting down her ideas in a little note book. Now-a-days Georgie is all grown up and still scribbling down pattern notes and ideas on her ever faithful iPad. Georgie now also has one adventure bound husband and two adorable yet exuberantly messy and creative children.
A typical day for Georgie includes squeezing in a bit of knitting at the beach, in the park, while playing games with the kiddies, soothing and feeding those kiddies, on road trips, reading stories along with the daily domestic goddess duties.
Georgie’s patterns are beautifully written, her designs are classic, simple and gorgeous.
“I love simple clean lines, seamless knits, bold colours, beautiful yarn and the quick thrill of creating kids knits.”
Please take the time to check out Georgie’s website here. You can also find her pattern Gidday available for purchase here at Augustbird as well as some Tikki designed hand-knits.