decorative woolliness

We used one of the last evenings before shearing to take some late 15th century shepherding photos with all the sheep still in their full "garb". The day after tomorrow they will all look kind of sheepish with their fleeces gone ;-)

After collecting period ilustrations with women as shepherds (anybody who read "The wee free men" will know why I don't use "shepherdess"!) for a while, I thought it was high time to take pictures with my flock before going to an open air museum to "play" with the local sheep. After all, my woolly friends would be really upset with me, if I would only use foreign sheep as models ;-)

So here they are in their full decorative woolliness:

Two friendly new faces in the herd - Coburger Fuschsschaf x Wendsleydale Longwool lambs.

Gabrielle, the cuddliest of this years lambs. When she was born, she was so small we really feared she would not make it. But with a very strong will to survive and a charming personality she grew from a strange looking alien into a cute little sheep :-)

Glynn, the sheepdog of my friend Birgit also agreed to pose with me :

She's a real help when we have to herd in the sheep for health checks etc. They are very nice and come to us when we call them to get treats like dry bread - but they just know when we plan "something nasty" like controlling their feet or deworming...
Then Glynn saves the day with her fast paws and sheepsense.

And last, but really not least, another cuddly sheep: Dietrich von Bern. He's one of my rams (actually, not really mine...) and a big softie. He loves getting human attention - others leave, when all the bread has been munched, Dietrich stays and wants to be stroked. Walliser Schwarznasen (Blacknose sheep from swiss region Wallis) are generally very friendly, but I think he's something special. According to breeding standarts his big black spot on the left shoulder is not allowed, so he was originally due to meeting the butcher...

But I was looking for a Walliser Schwarznasen ram as a present for my friend at the same time and so Birgit brought us together. Since then Dietrich is one of my favorites -  and he really was a success as a present, you should see Dietrich and Andi together!

Well, I think you really should, so I'll show you two more photos instead of one:


  1. Ohhh yes you'r right!

  2. Yes, they do look cute :-) At least fully dressed - now they all look really strange with their fluffy wool gone.

    It's a bit like butterflies the other way round: A cute sheep leaves its woolly cocoon behind to emerge as ... a rather skinny, ugly beast ;-)

  3. Love the waist bundle. I had wondered if the cross hatch pattern on many of the manuscripts might have represented a netting such as yours. Can you tell what you based the design off of?