Monday, May 26, 2008


I sent some fleece to Spinderella's mill for the first time. I had a BFL fleece blended with 20% nylon to spin for sock yarn. So far I have one bobbin nearly full. I am going to make a three ply yarn. My sample came out the way I planned. (love when that happens). The single is 40 wpi and the three ply is about 24 wpi. Can't wait to get it all spun up and then on to playing with dye. I am very happy with the processing that Jim and Lynn did and will be using them in the future. I must have hit it just right because the wool was back in two weeks.

Washing Wool

I wanted to process the fleece myself from my ewe's clip. Not the first clip from them, but the first now that they are mine. I washed up one fleece in small batches and the other two I kept the locks aligned and wrapped in cheesecloth and then placed that into some plastic containers. This is great for dunking up and down in the wash and rinse water so no need to touch the fiber. Keeps the locks neat in a row or rows depending on which container I use. Some are large enough to hold two rows, but only one can fit in the sink at a time. I placed the locks into the cheesecloth lined container and then folded over the four sides of the cloth. Fill the sink with very hot water and put in enough dish washing soap to make the water slick. You do not want suds. I used Ultra Dawn. Let the wool soak for at least 20 minutes and then lift out the container and fill the sink with water the same temp as you just let out. I add a *glug* of vinegar to the first rinse. Put the container back into the sink and after a minute or two dunk it up and down gently. It may take one or two more rinses to get the soap out and the water clear. Then I take the whole thing outside and place the locks on a cheesecloth lined wire shelf that is set up on saw horses in the patio. Cover the locks with another piece of cheesecloth to prevent the birds from flying off with the wool and let dry.

Sheep babies

On April 17th (my birthday)Terri's ewe Judy had twin ram lambs. Both born black, but as of now it looks like they are going to be gray. (Now? Yes, I am behind in posting to my blog. Life seems to get in the way. I have been distracted by knee pain,but that should be resolved soon with surgery.)
These lambs are Shetland. If you read previously, you know that Rocky is the ram and that we took three ewes to the breeder in November. The other two ewes had their lambs on April 23rd and May 1st. Out of the three sets of twins only one is a ewe lamb. Blossom is the brown ewe with brown babies and Peaches is the white ewe that has a black and a white baby. It will be interesting to see how all of these lambs turn out. Most will lighten up quite a bit according to the wool next to the skin.