After a gestation long enough to produce a lamb, let alone a website, I’m equally relieved and delighted to invite you to visit the shiny new White Gum Wool site. And if that wasn’t enough to make me smile, the new “dyed-in-the-wool” she-oak heather yarns arrived this week, too!
If you’re like me, you’ll probably just want to go browsing on your own. In fact, if you’re like me, you’ve probably already done so. However, if you are a bit more measured in your response, and would like some background to the new site, read on.
All the familiar parts of the site are still there: the Shop, Yarns from the Farm, the WGW Story, and background information on the farm and the yarn. They've all been brought up to date and made easier to access.
Here are some new things that I hope you’ll take the time to explore:
Scroll to the bottom of the Home page to find the Instagram feed, with the latest photos and videos of daily life on the farm. You'll also find links to the farm journals there.
Speaking of journals, you can now subscribe to Come Shepherding, the farm journal that takes you with me when I’m out on the hill.
We have an exciting new addition to the White Gum Wool journal family, the Sallyravels journal written by Sally Oakley, and dedicated to all things yarny.
To celebrate the launch of the new site, we’ll be giving away $50 gift vouchers to the 10th, 50th and 100th new subscribers to the Sallyravels journal and Come Shepherding. (You don’t need to re-subscribe to Yarns from the Farm if you're getting this as an email.) All of the journals will come to you by email when you subscribe.
You can also now search within any of the journals for a specific topic, or use the tag “cloud” in the side bar on each journal page to find previous posts incorporating a given topic. Take a look, for instance, at “wildflowers” on the Come Shepherding page by clicking on the tag.
In another new feature, you can comment on any of the journals at the end of each post. And of course you are always welcome to email me with comments, either by replying to the email version of the Yarn, or by way of the Contact page on the site.
Sally Oakley recently joined the White Gum Wool flock as official “Pattern Herder”. Okay, her real title is WGW Pattern Collections Designer. Many of you will know of Sally’s design, knitting and writing skills, and we’re looking forward to seeing where she takes the Sallyravels journal over the coming months. Sally is also coordinating our Winter 2017 collection of new and established patterns, to be launched in Southern Hemisphere autumn.
And speaking of patterns, one of the things I’m ridiculously proud of is the suite of patterns from independent designers—most from Australia and New Zealand—on the site. We’ve arranged them in WGW Pattern Collections to make it easy to find the perfect pattern to go with your yarn choice. You can now search by Designer, Infants & Children, Garment, Single skein, Yarn weight or Whimsy. We'll be adding more patterns in 2017. Have a look and see what you think.
In the Shop we’ve added a section called Gifts & Notions where you can buy gift packs and vouchers as well as project bags and needles. The Yarn and Fibre section of the Shop is arranged to make it easier to find the product you’re looking for. Fleeces have short histories, photos, videos and links to let you get acquainted with the personality of the sheep who grew the fleece. They’re worth checking out even if you’re not buying a fleece.
The shop now offers two secure payment options: PayPal and Stripe. Stripe simply accepts your credit card in a completely secure transaction.
I’d particularly like to acknowledge the creative power behind the new website, Michelle French of frenchbaker. Michelle's design and website development experience have been invaluable in creating the many new features and the fresh new look for White Gum Wool.
Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season.