A family business in Luddenden Foot is hoping they have the raw materials for a successful fibre arts company.
Turnacre Ryeland Wool Products was established in April this year by Julie Turner but has been three years in the planning.
The business has its origins in Julie’s son Jack and his then girlfriend, now his wife, Leah buying some pedigree Ryeland sheep in 2011.
Julie had the idea of using the wool for a new business producing and selling hand-spun and mill-spun wools.
Through her website, Julie sells yarns, buttons and soft furnishings as well as running workshops in the craft.
“I thought ‘I can do something with this’,” she said. “I’ve always been quite creative so it felt like a natural move for me.
“I taught myself how to process the wool into spun yarn. There was a lot of trial and error but now it’s developed into a real passion.
“The business side of it has been more difficult to learn because I’m much more of a creative person. It doesn’t really come naturally to me to sell myself.”
Julie has a BA Hons degree in youth and community development and a City and Guilds qualification in teaching adult learners as part of her former career.
She has big plans for the company and believes the quality of their wool and the firm’s hand-made products mean they stand out from the crowd.
She added: “My main customers are individuals who will use the wool to knit or crochet with it. I’ve got a few customers in America but also a lot in the UK.
“The wool I work with keeps its natural colour and is British. People like the trace-ability of the wool in that they can see exactly where it’s come from and know how the sheep are kept. Each yarn comes with a reference number than can be cross-referenced with our website.
“Plus the Ryeland breed is a minority breed. A lot of our competitors use different wools whereas ours are purely Ryeland, and all our wool is hand-spun.”