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Raising sheep and spinning yarns

  • A new ram named Hartley follows sheep around the pasture at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday. Elizabeth Frantz photos / Monitor staff

  • Sheep roam the pasture at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Sheep roam the pasture at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Sheep roam the pasture at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • The yurt at Owen Farm stands in a foggy field in Hopkinton on Wednesday.

  • Sheep roam the pasture at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • A pile of sheep wool waits to be turned into felted slippers at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday.

  • A sign for the yurt is seen at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Ruth Owen takes a look at one of her dusty spinning wheels to see what shape it's in at Owen Farm in Hopkinton on Wednesday, April 4, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Ruth Owen takes a look at one of her dusty spinning wheels to see what shape it’s in at Owen Farm in Hopkinton.



Monitor staff
Sunday, April 08, 2018

Growing up, Ruth Owen of Hopkinton had always wanted a black lamb. As a teenager, she got her wish during a visit to Martha’s Vineyard with her mother to delivery a pony.

“So we delivered the pony but we came home with a ewe and her baby,” Owen, now 79, said.

“Ever since then, I’ve had sheep.”

On Wednesday, those sheep roamed the Owen Farm pastures in the rain. Visible in the background was the property’s iconic yurt where Owen plans to host a spinning party on April 22.

“We have all this wool,” she said.

While the herd’s newly shorn coats won’t likely be ready to spin in time for the event, there’s still plenty of wool from last year.

Owen first learned to spin in her 20s, but in recent years, a switch to wool felting and health challenges have led to a lengthy break in the art.

“I do spin but not very much lately, which is why we’re going to do a little spinning thing at the yurt because I would like to get my spinning wheel out and start using it again.”

Spinners of all skill levels are welcomed to bring their wheels and join Owen at the yurt on April 22 starting at 1 p.m. Needle felters are also welcomed.

“The yurt is wonderful. We are so blessed to have the yurt,” Owen said.

She’ll have a couple of wheels and drop spindles for those without and plenty of wool, of course, for practice and for sale. She’s hoping for a good mix of seasoned veterans and beginners.

“We’re hoping it will be just like a little party,” she said, and expects good conversation and a beautiful view of the farm, including the sheep in their pasture.

The event is free, but communal snacks or donations would be welcomed. There’s no current plans to make this a recurring event, but it’s something Owen would welcome.

“I think that would be a fun thing to do.”