By Ross Manson Note: Originally published in the…
Pet lambs are always a huge attraction at promotional stands, but they are not always available at the right time.
The idea to make a handcrafted sheep came from a friend of mine who sent me a photo of one on her travels while overseas. I saw so many possibilities for its use, and I always like a challenge to make something that is unusual.
The body was made first with hand knitted and crocheted squares. These were made with lots of help from the team at our local Creative Fibre Group. The squares were sewn together around three pillows to make a very round barrel.
Next came the legs, which were made from empty yarn cones and an empty glad wrap cardboard tube fastened on top of the cone. Each leg was given more strength with six layers of paper mache, then a hand felted tube was pulled over the legs. The legs were attached to the body by an oblong piece of wood placed in the bottom of the body with a hole drilled in each corner of the wood to hold each leg. The sheep could now stand.
Next a hand felted long tail was made and attached, followed by a hand felted head, including ears. Once this was sewn on to the body, and eyes and a nose stitched on, the sheep had personality. The finishing touch was a knitted hat and scarf.
The sheep has its merits – no feeding, no sheep health requirements, it is easy to transport and lives in the house.
We take the sheep to branch promotional stands when we don’t have pet lambs to take. We have named her Mabel, as it means loveable, and with the number of small children coming to give iher a cuddle, I feel the name is very suitable.
Shirley Wallace, Nelson Branch.