How did you first become interested in Shetland knitting and textiles?
I’ve always had an appreciation for design and craftsmanship. And I love wool, as it is a wonderful natural material that we should be using more. It is very durable and it has excellent properties such as being renewable, biodegradable, breathable and brilliant for wearing in all seasons. Luckily, after falling out of fashion for several years, we’re now rediscovering this wonderful fibre.
In Shetland, we are very lucky to have the Native Shetland Sheep breed which was probably brought to the isles by Viking settlers. The native sheep are very hardy, and keeping them needs little human intervention. Ronnie Eunson described the uniqueness of this breed really well: ‘In essence; the Shetland sheep epitomises a sustainable system: It can get what it needs from its surroundings, as long as they are not overstocked. It can produce a lamb every year and a fleece. It can do all this and help combat climate change.’