Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
Janice Hensley to Spin Natural Dyed Wool into Yarn at Kentucky Artisan Center
On Friday, December 1, fiber artist Janice Hensley of Lancaster, will demonstrate spinning her natural dyed wool into yarn from 10:30 am – 3:30 pm at the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea.
Janice Hensley began raising sheep on her Windhill farm outside of Georgetown, as a 4-H project with her three young daughters and became fascinated with rare sheep breeds after seeing them at the Kentucky State Fair. Janice soon learned that the wool from each different rare breed, had very different characteristics - some being lustrous, some long and curly, and some with incredibly strong fibers. She began to focus on wool that could be woven and she now tends a flock of 30 Leicester Longwool sheep.
Janice takes her wool through all of the processes - from shearing the sheep with hand shears - to creating finished wearables. She shears her sheep, cleans the wool, cards it with steel combs to align the fibers, spins the wool with a spinning wheel and even plys or twists two to three different yarns together to make a thicker, heavier yarn.
Janice hand-dyes all her wool from natural plant materials gathered year- round. She uses fleabane, mimosa leaves and St. John’s Wort in the spring and summer, and collects madder root, black walnuts, hickory nuts and bark in the fall. These different natural materials when boiled and combined with a natural mineral or mordant, create the soft and varied palette of dye colors from which Janice weaves.
Works by Janice Hensley are regularly available at the Kentucky Artisan Center, located just off Interstate 75 at exit 77 (Berea). The Center’s exhibits, shopping, and travel information areas are all open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and the café from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. The Center currently features works by more than 650 artisans from all across the Commonwealth. For more information call 859-985-5448 or visit the Center’s web site at www.kentuckyartisancenter.ky.gov
The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is an agency in the Commerce Cabinet of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.