A Warm Fuzzy Feeling

These distinctive wares may not be as easy to find as mass-produced goods, but we can assure you the wraps, hats and blankets are worth the hunt and will keep you warm this fall and many more to come.

September 11, 2015 | | Made in the Hills

You’ll hear no complaints about the summer heat from these quarters. But when temperatures do start to drop come autumn, we’ll be ready to greet them with cozy layers, warm woollens and rich colours. Luckily, such snuggly offerings are widely available from local sources.

Herds of sheep and alpaca dot our region, and their owners shear their coats to offer yarns, blankets and knitwear. Crafty local designers sew, weave and felt to create one-of-a-kind clothing and décor pieces. Many are for sale at farmers’ markets or from producers’ homes, with custom orders welcome.

These distinctive wares may not be as easy to find as mass-produced goods, but we can assure you the wraps, hats and blankets are worth the hunt and will keep you warm this fall and many more to come.

Felt from head to toe

Jennifer Osborn of All Sorts Acre in Mono uses the wool from her sheep herd to craft a wide array of sculptural felted goods, including her 192os-style cloches – handblocked and a seriously toasty way to finish an outfit – and these sturdy slippers which are as cozy as they are artful. (Hats $125 and up; slippers $65 and up, All Sorts Acre.)

Bohemian wraps

Cheltenham-based designer Lauren Mair wears one of her Ellemairco kimono designs, which she creates from vintage pashmina scarves and new wool blends. She sells them online and the last Wednesday of every month at Inglewood Farmers’ Market. (Kimonos $4o–$7o, Ellemairco.)

Blanket statement

To create their heirloom-quality woollen blankets, Gord and Marg Quarrie of Spirit Walk Farm send their wool to MacAusland’s Woollen Mills on Prince Edward Island. Find them at Orangeville Farmers’ Market. Blankets lap-sized to queen-sized range from $7o to $17o. (Lap blanket $7o, Spirit Walk Farm.)

Hooked on pillows

Warm up your chesterfield or reading nook with this paisley pillow made from a hand-hooked rug by fibre artist Martina Lesar in her log cabin studio in the Caledon hills. (Large 2o” x 2o” pillow $55o, Martina Lesar Hooked Rug Studio.)

Good yarns

Looking for raw materials for your own DIY project in natural tones or eco-friendly dyed shades? Mulmur’s Kai-Liis McInnes is known for her alpaca, wool and mohair blends. Gord and Marg Quarrie of Spirit Walk Farm near Maxwell offer pure wool and wool-mohair blends at their Orangeville Farmers’ Market stall. (Left to right: Three skeins 258 yards/1oog (3.5 oz) $25 each, Kai-Liis McInnes. Three skeins 175 yards/113g (4 oz) $1o each, Spirit Walk Farm.)

Plum pickings

You’ll be hoping for the thermometer to dip just so you can pull out these cozy hats. East Garafraxa’s Mary Jane Langill sells her Personal Touches knit goods at Orangeville Farmers’ Market. And this alpaca knit hat by Kai-Liis McInnes is as soft as down. (Acrylic purple berry hat $14, Personal Touches. Purple alpaca hat $95 and up, Kai-Liis McInnes.)

Tie one on

Hold all the layers together with one of these obi sashes that Inglewood artist Lucille Weber has created in rich fall colours by sewing together men’s vintage ties. (Obi sash $4o, Lucille Weber Gallery.)

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  • Snug as a bug

    Orangeville designer Tracy Jefferson’s Sewing Crazy line of flannel and fleece baby clothes features hats, leggings, bibs, diaper covers, sleep sacks and jackets, priced from $5 to $4o. Custom-made sets are available. (Jacket about $4o, Sewing Crazy.)

    Knit wit

    At Shelburne’s Wool & Silk Co., owner Diane Griffith can walk you through how to knit this stunning shawl, made from hand-dyed merino wool sold in the store. Watch for upcoming fall knitting classes or drop in for sit-and-knit sessions. (Wool yarn for 18.5″ x 76″ shawl about $135, The Wool & Silk Co.)


    About the Author More by Tralee Pearce

    Tralee Pearce is the deputy editor of In The Hills Magazine.

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