[wip] Portuguese Wools - a practical guide
- Ryan Hoover, founder of Product Hunt in Founder Mantras
Well, There's a problem that I just never have...
Did I know that transforming bags of raw wool from every corner of our country into teeny-tiny envelopes like these would be so much work? Of course not. And I'm glad I didn’t, otherwise I would have chickened out.
So, more or less naiveté, the work has begun.
In the past months, I managed to collect fleeces from all the 15 breeds of portuguese sheep that, in the meanwhile, have become 16 ( hello, Black Churra Galega Bragançana!), thanks to the help of the technical secretaries of each breed association and some of my contacts that sent all the material to Porto.
With the enormous help from Isabel Cartaxo, Guida Fonseca and Diana Regal, all the samples were produced, including raw and washed locks, but also yarn and woven, knitted, crocheted and felted samples . Without this generous help, nothing of this would have been possible.
I collected samples from almost all color variations that each breed produces according to the breed standards and some more that are expected to be a part of the standard - finding out after gathering all the material that some of the black fleeces are not included in the breed standards and that I missed some that actually are, just made things way more interesting…
I gathered variations of sheep wool which may seem similar at first, but that have different wools and also multiple layers - oh, Mondegueira, why are you so complicated?
I gathered updated census that show why some breeds are considered to be in risk of extinction and also technical information that, in spite of diversity which is characteristic in our breeds, is extremely useful if we want to have and idea about the kind of wool each one produces: average thickness and length of fiber, average fleece weight and yield.
By now, I know how much the raw wool from each breed is being sold for and how this value changes according to very subjective things - I could go on forever about this.
And, above all, I finally have a good feel of the context each one is into, how it evolved in the recent past and how this background has led to the situation they are currently in, being that of decay or of expansion.
All I have to do is finish it. It’s like running a marathon. The last miles are always the hardest ones.