Fiona Gardner's Haunui Handcraft Wool comes from her single flock of NZ Halfbred sheep. NZ Halfbred is a defined, distinct breed of sheep in New Zealand. Sometimes I wish they’d chosen another name, because it is confusing! Many spinners in New Zealand (and other places) think it means some sort of crossbred, but it’s actually a stablised cross that’s been farmed for a long time. Even the New Zealand Black and Coloured Sheepbreeder’s Association seem unsure of the definition, because they give two descriptions on their site! The Spinner's Notes are the most relevant to Haunui Wool.
Fiona’s Haunui flock is a refinement of that breed, going towards the finer end of halfbred. I think what sets it apart is her careful selection with handspinnning in mind. Over 25 years of intensive breeding of this closed flock have gone into creating this premium combed top. All the Haunui Wools are grown and processed within New Zealand to Fiona's exacting standards.
Haunui Wool is ideal in the fine and extra fine range and the silk blends for soft, fine to medium yarns and fine and nuno felts, and within the medium range for more substantial yarns and felt work that requires more bulk such as slippers, hats and bags. Having said that, the medium blends with silk make wonderful drapey yarn suitable for lightweight garments and shawls. I have successfully spun medium Haunui in both chunky and light fingering weights, and everything in between. When I first started dyeing Haunui Wool, I focused on the finer line (now fine and extra fine) but I now dye within both the fine and medium range and have welcomed the advent of outstanding blends with silk and the triple blends, which give a wonderful tonal variation when dyed. To find out more about Haunui Handcraft Wools the daily tasks on the farm and the sheep, visit the discussion in my Ravelry Group