The holiday season is in full swing, and The Good Supply in Pemaquid invites the public to celebrate “Ask a Shepherdess”—a special day with Sheepscot Valley sheep farmer Laurel Gates of Shepherds Craft Farm—on December 15 from 10am–6pm.
A preview will be held December 14 from 10am–6pm for visitors to enjoy a first look at a large selection of unique and lustrous pelts, silky hand-spun and -knit wool hats and shawlettes, Ushunka hats lined with Gotland fleece, and a variety of hand-forged high carbon steel knives made by the shepherdess herself.
Refreshments will be served both days, and original artwork and housewares by nearly 100 Maine artists will be available for holiday shoppers to finish checking off their gift lists.
Shepherds Craft Farm moved from Northern California to Whitefield, Maine in 2015 in search of lush, green pastures, and since then, the flock and Ms. Gates have been thriving. Gates says, “I strive to integrate my flock with the landscape to provide a sustainable living for the crea- tures that share it. Using all parts of the sheep honors their lives and creates products that can bring warmth for many years.”
Gotland Sheep are known for their silky, lustrous, and perfectly curly wool. Originating in Sweden, the breed boasts a supremely soft fleece, which is often used in interior design. Laurel’s farm embraces sensible offshoots related to her needs as a shepherdess including the creation of wool wearables to keep her warm while minding the flock in Maine’s variable weather. The result is a fiber-lover’s trove of lustrous handspun accessories.
Her woolen goods have expanded to include hand-forged high carbon steel knives, which prove useful for farm work and butchering, and the building of timber frames, which offer shel- ter for the work. It is necessary for a shepherdess to be a “Jane of all trades,” which will make for very interesting conversation with Ms. Gates during this special holiday event.
About Shepherds Craft Farm
Shepherds Craft Farm tends a fertile, perennial-based farm in the Sheepscot Valley of Maine. It is home to a flock of Gotland, Teeswater, and Merino sheep cared for by trusty Border Collies, Great Pyrenees dogs, and shepherdess Laurel Gates.
The farm operates using rotational grazing practices, which results in a grass-based and sus- tainable system. Benefits that include breed integrity and enriched earth. In addition to caring for animals, the farm is a center for the creation of high carbon steel hand-forged knives and timber frames made to order.