Hi, my name is Aleashia, and I am an Environmental Scientist with a passion for knitting. I was always that weird kid knitting on a major construction site, in site utes, and site sheds. Life changed when my daughter came into my world. She was a life changing factor for me and that want and desire to work long hours, away from home for career progression disappeared overnight.
Stewardship of Great Southern Yarn passed to my husband Jarrad and I from Jennifer and Andrew in early 2023 due to illness in the family. I have followed and used GSY since they were established 5 years ago. I love the sing-origin, ethically produced yarn, brand, logo and colour ways that have been curated by Andrew and his team over the 5 years.
We also own and operate a boutique yarn shop in Wyong called the Grumpy Ginger Yarn Co. where we specialise in selling high end hand-dyed yarns.
But this whole journey starts with the fleece. A massive thank you to:
- The Lyons Family of Mt Bodangora Merino Farm
- Peter Chatterton at Design Spun Mills
We are very proud of our first new production range to be named Mt Bodangora Merino, after the beautiful Mt Bodangora Farm where our SRS Merino Fleece is sourced. The Mt Bodangora Merino is a 100% SRS Merino yarn.
In the coming months we will also be adding an 80/20 Merino / Nylon blend, as well as reviving previous Merino / Alpaca Blends, as well as single spun Merino.
Our wool is sourced directly from single origin sources, under ethical agreements with the farmer directly. Our suppliers are selected based on their quality of product as well as their treatment of the animals and sustainability practices.
Our raw fleeces are then exported to New Zealand for scouring at the Canterbury Wool Scours in Timaru, and then after scouring sent to Design Spun Mills in Napier.
Peter Chatterton has collectively owned and run the Design Spun Mill in Napier, New Zealand since the mid 1980’s. The product that Peter and his team produces is second to none, with the Worsted Milling Process producing soft, smooth and consistent yarn of various ply’s, twists and thread counts.
The fibre is then sent to Great Southern Yarns as naked yarn in large one kilogram, three kilometre long cones.
The cones are then separated into 100 gram hanks for dying, and eventual skeining for sale.
Great Southern Yarn is hand dyed. Our original colour ranges were created with the help of Gina Ermer, Anna Humphries, Rachael Laves, and Catherine Lee.
Catherine continues to assist both my husband and myself today with the current Great Southern Yarn range. We will be looking to add new colour ranges in the coming year that compliment who we are.
Our various hand-dyed colour ranges has been inspired and named after Australian female artists and their paintings, as well as our Snowy Mountain inspired range.
Our current ranges come in 25 solid and 13 variegated colours.
Our merino wool comes from Mount Bodangora Merino , a six generation Merino property run by the Lyons family, near Dubbo, NSW.
The Lyons have 9,000 Soft Rolling Skin (SRS) Merino sheep that produce a wonderful fleece that is ideal for yarn.
The SRS Merino is fast growing with a high crimp that binds
particularly well in the milling process and is renowned for its low itch feel. The SRS Merino sheep are smooth bodied, naturally resistant to fly strike and never need to be mulesed.
The Lyons run a mob of 600 sheep especially for Great Southern Yarn to supply us with a longer length fleece of around 100mm or four inches to create the best of yarns.
Our alpaca comes from Australia’s greenest state – Tasmania. The cold climate and rich pasture produces a lustrous, clean and well-nourished fleece.
Mark and Helen Jessop, of Mossvale Alpacas, run a herd of 300 alpacas and work with a collection of boutique alpaca farmers from the region to select fleeces for their softness, fibre
length and suitability for yarn.
The Jessops have raised alpacas for over 20 years and have a special connection with their animals and their fleece.
Bronwen and Michael Redgate of Banjo Ridge Suri Alpaca Farm run a herd of 100 Suri alpaca’s at Dungog, NSW. Their animals are lovingly cared for and their fleece prized for its luxurious handle.
Their free-roaming alpacas have a low environmental footprint as their padded foot means they are gentle on the pasture and their compaction of the soil is significantly reduced.
Each fleece is carefully selected for Great Southern Yarn