More on Cranberry Fleece

I hate to be so boring, but I’m still focused on the fleece I just dyed.

In my last post, I commented that some of the fleece was green – actually, its not. I guess it was just very dark and very wet. Once the fleece dried (or dried more since its still not 100% done) the green disappeared, and only shades of cranberry and purple remained. Its really nice from a color perspective.

Now that its almost dried, I can see where I apparently felted it a bit. Apparently reading up is a good thing before trying anything new. I did a search this morning on handcarding, and came across the site The Joy of Handspinning. They had a nice section on Washing Fleece. Hmmm…

“To prevent the fleece from felting, avoid the urge to knead the fleece or handle it excessively when it is in the water. Also between rinses be sure to fill the next tub of water at the same water temperature you are taking the fleece from. “

OK, I did the last part, but the first? I was not just kneading, I was squeezing, flipping it around – yeah, I’d say I handled it excessively. Who knew? I thought felting happened when you change the water temp drastically. Sigh…live and learn. I’m going to try and salvage what I can.

Joy of Handspinning is a great site; they have videos on almost everything. I went there to figure out how to use handcarders. Its pretty easy, and sort of fun to see this rough and gnarly fleece turn into roving. Larry even offered to learn so he could help me get through the whole fleece (but he did say that he wouldn’t do it if we had anyone over!).
Here are a couple of rolags that I did today: I have to admit, I couldn’t wait to see how it spun up, so I did a bit (spinning is becoming like knitting – I have three different fibers on the bobbins). It came out very nice – beautiful color with a lot of depth to it, and I’m so excited to see it spin into “real” yarn. I want to buy more fleeces now!

Now that I’ve completely bored you on the fleece thing….I am just about finished with the Trekking socks for Larry and will post pictures next time. Then I need to start (and finish) the other lace sock.

On Saturday, I ordered a few books from Amazon. I couldn’t believe it – Fedex came today (gotta love Amazon Prime!). I bought Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush (I’ve wanted this one for a while), Yarns to Dye For by Kathleen Taylor and The Twisted Sisters Sock Workbook by Lynne Vogel. I only had a chance to take a quick look at them, but I can’t wait to sit and read all of them. Yarns to Dye for shows you how to dye self-striping and fair isle sock yarn – how cool is that? And the Twisted Sisters book has beautiful ideas for dyeing. I guess I need to order some yarn and more dyes!


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