How to make Jacob Sheep Ornaments

jacob orn in tree 1 adjusted

What’s a Jacob Sheep, you ask? They’re a rare old breed that’s still being preserved today. They are named for the biblical Jacob, who bred spotted sheep to spotted sheep and got (wait for it) spotted sheep! This was a pretty big deal in those days. It’s hard to dye colors if you live in a desert climate, so breeding colored wool was a boon to old Jacob.

geoffrey_charles 2

This magnificent Jacob was one of our first, named Geoffrey Charles.

Jacob Sheep always have horns, either two, four or even six horns. They are all uniquely marked, so you can always tell who’s who out in the field. They are intelligent (ahem, intelligent for sheep), curious and friendly. We’ve been raising Jacob Sheep on our farm for over thirty years.

These Jacob Sheep ornaments are quick and easy to make. They’re perfect for the tree, but can also be made up as refrigerator magnets.

This pattern is so easy, you could just freehand it directly on the burlap. Just draw an oval, about 2.5″ tall and 1.5″ wide, with a nose patch and two eye patches. If you want to make multiples, just leave about 3″ of burlap between ovals, so you’ll have enough selvage to do the finishing. And since Jacob Sheep are all individually marked, you can go for a variety of nose and eye patches.

Hook the ornaments with black and white yarn. When you’ve finished the hooking, cut the pieces out, leaving at least 1″ of burlap all around.

jacob ornaments cutting out

With a regular needle and thread, tack the burlap edge down in back, as close as possible to the hooked edge. Be sure to dig deep with your needle, so you’re grabbing the burlap backing, not a bit of yarn.

jacob ornaments tacking down burlap

Trim the excess burlap away, close to the stitching.

jacob ornaments trim burlap

At this point, you might want to press your ornaments with a steam iron.

Using a 12″ pipe cleaner, bend according to the photo below to create the upper horn, ear and lower horn, all in one piece. If you can’t get 12″ pipe cleaners, then make the horns and ear pieces separately. I hot glue the pipe cleaners to the back of the ornament, but if you prefer, you can sew them in place.

jacob ornaments glue pipe cleaner

If you want to make ornaments for the tree, cut a 3″ piece of ribbon and sew or hot glue it to the ornament. If you prefer to make your ornament into a refrigerator magnet, skip this step.

jacob ornaments ribbon

Next, hot glue (or sew) black felt to the back of the ornament. Trim away any excess felt. If you wanted to make refrigerator magnets, hot glue the magnet to the felt backing (you really can’t sew the magnets, you need to glue them).

jacob ornaments

Jacob Sheep refrigerator magnets

If it sounds like fun to whip up these ornaments but you don’t want to bother finding all the fiddly bits, you can order the kit. The kit comes with everything you need to whip up 4 ornaments (pattern on burlap, yarn, ribbon, magnets, pipe cleaners, felt backing, hooking and sewing instructions). Note: the kit doesn’t include a hook, but you can get that separately. However, if you want to throw in our award-winning book, Joy of Hooking (With Yarn!), you’ll save $15 (we call it the Special Package). And best of all, if you order the Special Package, you’ll be entered to win…

antique flower rug cropped for web

Antique Flower Rug, 33.5″x24.5″ Designed and hooked by Judy Taylor

There’s still time to enter to win the Antique Flower Rug (a $550.00 value!). For every fifty dollars you spend with Little House Rugs between now and November 25, 2018, you’ll be entered to win (if you spend $100, you’ll be entered twice, $150, you’ll be entered three times, etc.). Somebody is going to win it this very month, why not you?

With the holidays fast approaching, what to give the yarnophile who has everything? May I suggest…

so much yarn for web

So Much Yarn/So Little Time, 31″x22″ Designed and hooked by Judy Taylor

The So Much Yarn Pattern on Linen makes a great gift for the yarn lover in your life. You need about 1.5 oz. of leftover yarns to hook each of the colors, and I guarantee you, the yarn lover in your life has 1.5 oz. of leftover yarn! The pattern on linen happens to sell for $50, so right there, you’ll be entered to win the Antique Flower rug! The pattern comes with rug hooking instructions and a guide for how much yarn you need to hook the rug. It doesn’t include the hook though, (since you only need one hook for your whole life) but that can be ordered separately.

And if your yarnie already has our first two award-winning books, Joy of Hooking (With Yarn!) and Rug Hooker’s Guide to the YARNIVERSE!, I bet they don’t have the newest book, T-Shirt Treasures!

t shirt cover scan for web

If you enjoyed this blog, but aren’t a subscriber yet, just click the Follow button on the lower right hand corner of the screen. It’s free! If you become a subscriber, the monthly post, chock full of tips and techniques, web specials, upcoming shows and classes, etc. will show up in your very own email box.

Happy Hooking Everyone!


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