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Yes Sir, Yes Sir

Three Bags Full!!

scottish-3-bags-fullWashed, picked, and ready to be carded.

From a fleece I brought home from our last visit to Scotland.  I won’t say how long ago, because I know now it is not a good thing to store a dirty fleece.  At the time I knew quite a bit less than I do now about choosing a raw fleece to hand spin, but none the less, I had it so I had to work with what I had.

And it was work let me tell you.

scottish-fleece

This is how it started, pretty much a big pile of stuff in a bag.  I just loved the creamy tan and  the soft brown color blend.  I don’t  even remember what type of sheep it came from.  I am so bad at this kind of stuff, but I have made a promise to myself to get better at recording the details before jumping in head first and going off all willy-nilly in my new fiber/project stupor.

scottish-fleece-in-the-tub1

Remember I said it was dirty??  Well after skirting off some nasty bits, I separated it into 3  smaller piles.  Then each batch, as it were, got washed in the tub several times, until I was satisfied it was clean.  I used your basic Dawn dish washing detergent because I felt I needed to get out as much of the grease (& dirt) as possible.  So after 3 or 4 soakings in hot water & soap, the bath water ran clear.  Each batch was then soaked again in hot water with some white vinegar.  Then one last time in just hot water to get the vinegar smell out.  So about 6 soakings each for 3 batches = about 18 soakings  roughly 20 minutes each – so yeah – all day….

scottish-fleece-drying-4

It was then off to the garage and onto the rack we usually use to start seedings on each spring. This was a true moment of genius, because when you have so much of this damp -  soft – fluffy -  yummy – cuddly -wet dog smelling stuff,  I mean that it in good way, you have to have enough space to spread it out in, with air getting at it all around, so it will dry quickly, and so that you can get on with your willy-nilly new fiber/project stupor.  Anyway, this worked great, out in the garage, out of the way, lots of fresh air, and away from any dog or cat in the house trying to see if it was still alive and maybe someone new to play with.

scottish

I took a small batch, because I just couldn’t wait, carded it on my mini Strauch cader, of course without taking pictures of this part of the process.  You know that whole willy-nilly thing took over again.

I then spun it up on my Ashford Joy, which I truly adore .  Plied the  bobbins that I spun into a DK weight,  really nice soft brown almost what used to be called “worsted” weight.

Promise to self – take pics of the carding process with the 3 bags full….

scottish-washedscottish-drying

It was then washed once more.  This time in Eucalan, and hung to dry  down in our nice warm, dry basement.

scottish-closeupscottish-romney-chocolate-vanillaSo here it is up-close & personal.. I know not such a great picture, it is not focused & too bright, so it doesn’t show the true color.  This is another skill I need to work on.

But then, here it is on the top left, all dry and skeined.  It is pictured with some Romney spun at Christmas time.  I just like the whole chocolate and vanilla theme going on here.  It is a nice chocolaty soft brown & I can’t wait to go all willy-nilly on the rest of it!

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