As a hand knitter, you're constantly on the lookout for new and exciting fibers to enhance your craft. One such gem that deserves your attention is Bluefaced Leicester (BFL) fiber. In this blog post, we'll explore the exceptional benefits BFL offers for hand knitters and delve into the fascinating history of the breed, staple length, and the reasons why Bluefaced Leicester is highly prized in the knitting community.
A Brief History:
Originating in the UK, the Bluefaced Leicester breed has a history spanning several centuries. Developed in the early 20th century through careful breeding, it combines the qualities of Leicester and Teeswater sheep. The breed quickly gained popularity for its luxurious fleece, coveted by spinners and hand knitters alike.
The Staple Length Advantage: One of the standout features of BFL fiber is its impressive staple length. With an average staple length of 3-6 inches (7.6-15.2 cm), BFL fiber is considerably longer than most wool varieties. This extended staple length makes it a joy to work with, providing greater ease in spinning and knitting.
Why hand knitters love it:
Bluefaced Leicester fiber offers several benefits that make it a favorite among hand knitters:
Softness and Luster: BFL fiber is known for its exquisite softness and subtle luster. The long, fine fibers create a luxurious feel against the skin and add a beautiful sheen to finished projects.
Draping and Drapeability: Due to its longer staple length and smooth texture, BFL fiber has excellent draping properties. It effortlessly flows and hangs, making it an excellent choice for knitting garments like shawls, sweaters, and dresses.
Elasticity and Stitch Definition: BFL wool possesses natural elasticity, ensuring that your knitted creations retain their shape while allowing for comfortable movement. Additionally, the fiber's smoothness enhances stitch definition, making intricate patterns and textures stand out beautifully.
Warmth and Breathability: BFL wool provides excellent warmth without feeling heavy or suffocating. Its breathable nature helps regulate body temperature, ensuring comfort in a range of climates.
Bluefaced Leicester's high standing in the knitting community can be attributed to its unique combination of features. The breed's long staple length, softness, and luster make it an ideal choice for creating luxurious garments and accessories. Its versatility and compatibility with a wide range of knitting techniques have solidified its position as a prized fiber for discerning knitters worldwide.
If you're seeking a fiber that embodies softness, luster, and excellent stitch definition, Bluefaced Leicester is a superb choice for your knitting projects. With its rich history, long staple length, and myriad of benefits for hand knitters, BFL fiber presents a world of possibilities and a touch of elegance to your creations. Give it a try, and immerse yourself in the luxurious world of Bluefaced Leicester fiber.