Friday, May 25, 2012

Fiber Friday

Regular scheduled Feline Friday will commence shortly (after I collect more photos) for now, enjoy Fiber Friday!

I wanted to know if processing a fleece was something I would enjoy doing.  I had some raw wool from the spinning class that I took before I purchased my wheel.

I weighed it, curious how much was there.  I was very surprised to find out it was quite a bit.  Dirty it was 9.14 oz.

I read quite a few different sources to find out how to scour a fleece.  What I learned was that hot water was needed to dissolve the lanolin or "grease".  The different sources listed many different temperatures, but 120º was listed in several, so I went with that.  That temp was exactly what I could get out of my tap as well, so it seemed a good temperature.

I washed the raw wool twice in dishsoap baths.

What came out was pretty disgusting.  I can only describe it as dirt soup.

After two wash tubs.  I rinsed about 3 or 4 times in just water.  I stopped after the water was clear.

Then I laid it out to dry.

The sun went down, so I took it inside and laid it out to dry.  It took about 4 days.  However, it was rainy and humid, so I think that's what took so long.  The last day I left a fan on it for 1.5 hours, then took it to my yarn room.

Its much cleaner than it was, as you can see.  I weighed it post washing and it was 7.2 oz.  There is still a small bit of vegetable matter and ick in it that I will pick or cut out.

Here is a lock.

And here is that lock carded with my flick carder.  There is still a bit of lanolin in there, but not too much.  I do get a "just put lotion" on feeling after handling it. 

I enjoyed the process a lot.  I think I will be in the market for a full fleece soon!


Minding My Own Stitches said...

Dirt soup LOL! I think I leave the processing to you and just enjoy the yummy yarn that comes out at the end!

WildflowerWool said...

Sounds like a lot of work, but fun! Thanks for the step by step info.

Lynn said...

two ounces of dirt?!?!?! ick!! But it looks beautiful once it's been washed and carded. Like a puffy cloud. Will you dye it?

Gracey is not my name.... said...

Yuck! Glad you enjoyed it...I have no desire....