My relationship with Shetland dates back to 2012 when I received first Shetland fleeces from an organic farm in beautiful natural shades of grey to be spun into yarn on my spinning wheel and then woven into fabrics on my loom.

The properties of wool from native Shetland sheep are widely known and well appreciated in the textile world – even though it’s unimproved it’s softer than other Scottish wools and there are 11 natural shades from black to white these small, hardy sheep can grow!

Attracted and fascinated by its’ native sheep breed and unique textile heritage I went for my first Shetland trip in summer 2014 (you can read about it here: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4). This one of a kind experience had turned my interest towards islands’ vivid textile heritage – both traditional and modern. My curiosity grew steadily what resulted in more experiments in handspinning and weaving with Shetland wool.

Since 2015 I’ve been taking part in Shetland Wool Week, an international textile event and big celebration of the Isles’ textile heritage, with participants coming from all over the world (Australia, Canada, US, Holland, Norway, to name a few). I’ve been demonstrating different weaving techniques and running workshops in cooperation with Shetland Organics CIC.

In 2016 I decided to move to Shetland for one year to take an academic course in contemporary textiles as full time student at Shetland College and to work on a research project about Shetland tweed history – The Shetland Tweed Project. It has been an amazing time of professional development, filled with new experiences. Although Shetland adventure came to an end in autumn 2017 I will be gladly coming back to the islands which are a perfect place for textile people.