July 9, 2013

Lets Get to the Fluffy Stuff

Did I go to the Black Sheep Gathering? You betcha! Did I spend a lot of money? NO!

No? Yup.  While I don't believe I qualify as STABLE (STash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy), I do have enough fiber to keep me busy for some time, especially as my current project output level seems pretty low.  And, oddly, I wasn't on the hunt for any particular fleece. You know, a certain type or color, or one that jumps up and says. 'You Can't Live Without Me!' So I went to BSG, fully planning to not buy fleece. (Not that this strategy has worked before, because it is usually just a downfall waiting to happen.) Weird, huh?

What I did do was spend hours in the 'wool barn' watching and listening to Judith McKenzie judge fleeces. Wow. What a great education. What an outpouring of information. What an eye opener too! Judith would pick up a fleece and extol the virtues of that particular type of fleece and I'd think to myself, "Well, I'd never thought of using that kind of fleece before, but clearly I need a fleece like that." Dangerous stuff when you're on a fleece diet. I'll be getting back to fleece in a minute.

My apologies to all the vendors at BSG. Your wares were all just as enticing as always; the fibers, the colorways, the tools. It seems I had more than my fair share of self restraint this year, I bought only 2 things. I promise to do better next year. Here is my haul; a crochet hook, because I couldn't find the one I knew was in my notions case,
don't worry, of course the missing hook showed up after I brought this one back. What is 'knooking'? the package said this type is for knooking. It will work fine for knit repairs.

And this lovely little 1 oz. batt, purchased from a young man who creates and sells them to put toward his college fund. I couldn't resist. I think his name is Colton.

Now we get back to fleece. Remember, diet doesn't mean abstinence. My wonderful pal Dusty, of the ranch, decided to add a few wool sheep to her small flock of sheep, in order enable my fleece habit. That's what friends are for, right? She decided on Navajo-Churros and brought home two ewe lambs from Dot Ranch. One of them was due for shearing during my visit. Here is a (cell phone) picture of Kayla just before shearing. I love love love the color of her fleece, especially the golden color of the tips.
Here is what she looks like after shearing.
Yup, dark chocolate brown. At least for now. Her color will probably lighten up as she gets older. Here is the result.
Eye candy. As this is her lamb fleece, that inner wool is pretty soft. Maybe soft enough for next to skin. Maybe. I played around with a little bit, you know, just to get acquainted.
From right to left; intact locks, longer outer wool, shorter and finer inner wool. Without washing, I spun singles from the locks.
From left to right; intact lock spun worsted style, intact lock spun woolen style, outer wool spun worsted, inner wool spun woolen. The samples were washed after spinning, and they're over spun as singles. I was thinking I'd ply them, then didn't. The first 3 are pretty tough, not for next to skin, but I wasn't expecting that. However, I think they'll work wonderfully for weaving. The 3rd sample, the longer outer wool? That is tough stuff and I think would make great warp. The 4th sample might work for next to skin if I'm more careful with my spinning, taking care to keep it light and airy. Otherwise, it works well spun without separating the locks.  Bonus - spending time getting to know the Susie Pro.

See! I did bring home a fleece!

No comments:

Post a Comment