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The Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook

4.74  ·  Rating details ·  595 ratings  ·  50 reviews
This one-of-a-kind encyclopedia shines a spotlight on more than 200 animals and their wondrous fleece. Profiling a worldwide array of fiber-producers that includes northern Africa’s dromedary camel, the Navajo churro, and the Tasmanian merino, Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson include photographs of each animal’s fleece at every stage of the handcrafting process, from raw t ...more
Hardcover, 438 pages
Published 2011 by Storey Pub
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Aug 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
It took me months to skim through this & I can't say I retained much of it save that it's a great reference on various fleeces & fibers. It's broken up into types, usually by animal & then breed. Each sort has a good, descriptive blurb about the animal & the fiber. It's fun as a coffee table book & certainly helped me figure out which fleeces to even look at. ...more
Jul 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What an amazing book!! If there was ever anything you wanted to know about fiber or fleece - anything about wool - this is the book in which to find it! Written in an easy-to-read format with lots of side-bars with interesting facts, I never seem to want to put it down. This is a must-have for anyone who works with fiber - either the production of or in any kind of craft or hobby.
Jun 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not done yet, but can already tell it's 5 stars. Brilliantly thorough survey of sheep breeds and fleece and fiber characteristics across the spectrum of animal fibers. If you spin, knit or it. ...more
Deborah Robson
Jan 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Okay, working on getting this book categorized correctly. I'm the author. Yes, I think it's five-stars good, although I was going for ten and ran out of time! ...more
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an amazing book! Deborah Robson has given all fiber enthusiasts an indispensable reference work. There are about 1400 sheep breeds world-wide, and a number of other animals, such as goats, angora rabbits, yaks, alpacas, and other animals that provide fiber humans use in various forms, such as textiles, stuffing, insulation, and other uses. They vary in substantial ways in thickness, soft or scratchy, length, crimp, etc. For the spinner, knitter, or weaver learning about these characteris ...more
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Huge, encyclopedic guide to all types of fiber animals. This volume features hundreds of full-color photos of the animals and how their fiber looks at various stages in the journey from "sheep to swatch." A must-have reference for spinners and other fiber artists interested in branching out from the mainstream all-merino all-the-time offerings at the LYS. ...more
Jan 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fibre-arts
This is THE book for fiber arts and all things wool for fiber fanatics! It's a big book of loads of information on many different breeds with tips for spinning and knitting with it. There are swatches for it in multiple states including with and without the grease, what it looks like knit up in worsted and woolen. It's a hard book to read from beginning to end especially if you have gotten it out of the library and have a time limit with it. This is a handy book to dip into for researching speci ...more
Aug 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Fleece & Fiber Sourcebook is my go to book for facts and information regarding varieties of wool fleece. I process and spin many types of raw fleece, and this book is a "must have". The breeds are easy to find, and the information is reliable. The book helps guide the spinner/knitter to the correct kind of fleece for every project. The information also aids spinners in processing and creating the right yarn for a specific project. With all the varieties of sheep in the world, this guide take ...more
Danielle Burch
Jul 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: crafters, fiber artists, Homesteaders, Microfarmers, livestock owners
This book is incredible. I'm in love. It is packed full of detailed information and color photo profiles of different types of fiber animals and the fiber they produce. Everything from a huge selection of sheep to camelids, dogs & cats, horses, rabbits, ect. A must have for anyone interested in fiber arts or fiber animals. ...more
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spinning
I read non-fiction before sleeping. This is set up with a few pages per source, just enough to occupy my running thoughts. There is a picture of the lock, spun fiber and knitted swatch. Very accessible writing with helpful descriptions.
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely the best guide out there for breed specific wool! Great information on the sheep, the fleece, knitting and spinning. Gorgeous pictures. It's the one book I NEED for my spinning. ...more
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An essential reference book for anyone working with wool fiber, especially textile artists
Laurie Carlson
This book is an amazing book! It is huge! It cover everything you need to know about all the different fleeces and fibers you can spin on a spinning wheel into yarns, threads, and more. I believe the author named this book what they did today because if she were to name it Spinning, most of you would associate it with bicycles today! Nope. She is referring to the old-fashioned Spinning Wheel. This book is a must-read book and is so educational. You will learn what our ancestors did before there ...more
Jan 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Received from NetGalley
Release Date June 1, 2011

Overall: I found this book very enlightening and useful. I am a crocheter so learning about yarns I use is kind of a fun side hobby. This book was easy to follow and there was a great deal of information to look through.

What I Found Useful: The index made the Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook a good reference book. It was broken into 2 sections: Sheep and Other Wool Sources. Then the types were broken down by region and type of animal (sheep). I found th
Ruth Ann
Nov 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: craft
This is a quality resource that has been detrimental on my spending cash. I started spinning with a drop spindle and watched Deborah Robson's free mini class called Know Your Wool on the Craftsy website. I had to get this book. The uninitiated have no idea about the varieties of fleece and fibers that one can spin into yarn.

Common and exotic sounding names fill the pages and I'm beginning to sound like an expert in my need to collect some different varieties. As much as I lust for qiviut, it
Aug 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful resource! This book covers everything you need to know about the behaviors, care and preparation of many sheep breeds and also includes other fiber animals. The authors researched each fiber so well. There's been so many discussions on ravelry on how to prep alpaca and llama fleeces - most wrong! These authors are absolutely correct (from my experience) on how to prepare the fiber and it's uses. This is a book for anyone that deals with fiber: spinner, weaver, the knitter, croch ...more
Dec 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
5 stars as a reference book.

This book is incredible. Everything you could ever need to know about sheep breeds and types of fibers (as well as any other animal that you could possibly spin fiber from). Hundreds of kinds of sheep, plus rabbits and alpacas and even yaks. It's awesome. I've already used it several times this week while researching sheep breeds of fleeces I'm interested in buying.

I can't fathom the amount of work that went into researching this book. It's amazing. :) I basically re
Wendy Janett
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Other than actual religious tomes, this book is my bible. It lives on my nightstand so I always have quick access to it. For anyone who wants to understand more about animal fiber and its uses in hand production of yarn and textiles, this volume is the definitive work. The sections on various breeds of sheep, which comprise the bulk of the book, are outstanding in expounding upon not only the history of each breed, but also each breed's role in history, as well as the unique characteristics of e ...more
Jul 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crafts
This book is amazing. I am nearly done with my second readthrough, and I've only had it about three weeks. It is very interesting for a reference book. (Of course, that could just be because I'm obsessed by spinning, weaving, and knitting.)

It is inspiring for spinners and other crafters who work with animal fiber and yarn. I have begun seeking out rarer breeds to spin, and I've started a sample binder for myself to keep track of what I like and don't like and other observations as well as spun s
Deborah Robson
Jan 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I have to give this 5 stars because I wrote it and I know what went into it. I do know that there was more I wanted to write, but we ran out of time. I wish I knew how to add the cover image! I have one right here on my computer. / Hmm. I also am trying to change from the e-book edition (which I have not seen yet, although I know it exists) to the physical book, which isn't in the database. Can you guess that I'm relatively new here? I signed up about the time I started researching Fleece ...more
Jan 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: knitting
What a joy this book was! I reference it often. I am a spinner/knitter/dyer and have been playing around with different local breeds of sheep. This book has helped me in so many ways! I can pull a sample from my fiber stash, compare it to the very helpful (and numerous) pictures of samples. It helps me identify which breed in a cross-bred animal is more present in the fiber, and how to go about preparing it and spinning it. A treasured book.
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: knit-weave
This book is a must for hand-spinners. Comprehensive overview of breeds of sheep and many other animals around the world. Photos of each type animals, fiber, yarn, plus a knit and a woven swatch for each breed. How did they get this done? Authors gave historical information and other interesting tidbits of information. This is a large, heavy book but fasinating to study.
Dec 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spinning, owned
In my opinion, one of the best sources of information about fiber for spinning or even for knitting and how to use it. It is beautifully printed and written and I've read it cover to cover, twice (and got Deb to sign it). I can't say enough about what an invaluable resource this is for information about fiber, especially about wool. ...more
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Comprehensive and beautiful photos and illustrations throughout. Overview of many different animals and plants that people use to make useful things in our lives. Reference and coffee table book. Great gift for any knitter, spinner, weaver, etc. in your life.

Good quality paper and binding.

Need to buy and reread.
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
If you're into yarn, this book is like a dream. Funny and super-informative. The pictures are beautiful and the index makes everything easy to find. I didn't know there are feral sheep. An excellent resource! ...more
Jan 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
encyclopedic resource of sheep breeds for the handspinner / knitter / weaver / fiber crafter. i've really enjoyed looking up breeds that i've been spinning, and those that i'm considering for a larger purchase. ...more
Dec 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A book that every spinner or person interested in raising sheep should have on their shelf. Very well done. Tells about every breed of sheep, gives pictures of fiber and spun fiber, and micron count and all that good info for each breed.
Feb 20, 2016 rated it liked it
Enjoyable to read, lots of pictures and examples of the many breeds of sheep. Lacking a localized focus so it did not help me identify the wool I recently received, but pretty to look and informative all the same.
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
I find myself going back to this book often! So much useful information for spinners – beginners to advanced. A helpful resource for planning your projects from the first spin of the wheel to the final stitch of a finished piece.
Jul 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
If you're into fiber -- really into fiber -- don't just read this book: buy it. You won't be disappointed. ...more
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