As featured on
New Lives in the Wild with Ben Fogle
Welcome to South Brough Croft, home of the cruelty-free, 'Oo without the Ow' flock of Shetland sheep.
I'm Helen and I live on the croft. Come on in and let me show you around.
No sheep are harmed in the making of these rugs. They are made with a felt base rather than the traditional "skin".
Sheep naturally produce wool. This is grown for an extra layer of protection in the winter months and shorn to keep them healthy and mobile in the summer.
A little piece of Shetland beneath your feet
Shetland enjoys a rich history where crofting is an integral part of the way of life. Each rug comes from one of our 47 sheep; each with their own character and story.
Beautifully hand-crafted rugs made from the finest Shetland wool
(Click on the image to find out more!)
What are ‘Oo without the ow’ Rugs?
‘Oo’ is the Shetland word for wool or sheep fleece. The ‘ow’ is because the rugs are cruelty free. I make these beautiful rugs only from the fleece of the sheep once it’s shorn and the sheep continues to live a happy, sheep life. If you look on the back of an ‘Oo without the ow’ rug you will only see more wool that has been felted, whereas on a sheepskin rug you will see the skin still attached. These rugs are therefore sustainable and ethical. They are ideal if you want to a traditional, natural rug but don’t like the idea of a sheep having to lose life in the process.
Each summer, my little flock of Shetland sheep are shorn of their winter coats. You can almost see the relief as they gambol around feeling lighter and cooler. I then take the fleece and layout additional fleece that I have carded (combed so all the fibres lay in the same direction) on the cut side. Then comes the hard work! Using only water and natural olive oil soap, I begin to massage the fibres together. This can take many hours and a great deal of water. By the time you receive your rug, you can be sure that it is as clean as any product from a living creature can be. However, my hardy Shetland sheep live outside all year, snuggling up into the heather and carving out nooks in the peat banks, so you may well find small pieces of these natural and harmless items in the rug, although I do my best to remove any that I find. If you are lucky enough to have any of these things in the rug, consider it my bonus gift from Shetland to you!
If you are interested in purchasing one of these unique rugs, feel free to fill in the form below or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll be sure to get back to you as soon as I can!