Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Walkin' in a Wooly Wonderland

Okay, maybe it is a little early to be singing modified Christmas tunes, but it sure seems like the holidays when your fiber arrives from the processor. Zing. Oh happy day.

This is my second batch of the year and I had the processor (Dakota Carding & Wool in SD) do different blends for me. Some of the differences are very subtle (or perhaps even nonexistent) when observed through photography and your monitor, but there is a reason these are called luxury blends--they feel wonderful.

All the wool was processed into cloud. All of the sheep fleeces are from Sommarang Farm in Wisconsin. Please note that I am not giving you the proper terms for the Shetland colors, but descriptive colors instead. This disclaimer is for all my Shetland loving friends around the world.

 Batch 1: Black Shetland wool ("Comfrey"). This was just plain ol' wool not blended.

Batch 2: Black Shetland wool ("Comfrey") blended with my neighbor's black alpaca ("Nightshade"). It's very hard to tell from the photo but the alpaca adds a softness to the wool both visually and tactiley (is that a word?).

Batch 3: Grey Shetland wool ("Giselle") blended with a friend's grey llama ("Knight").

Batch 4: Grey Shetland wool ("Giselle") blended with mohair from my black/grey Angora goat ("Huck"). Mohair adds a lustre to the wool and almost makes the fiber seem to spin itself.

Batch 5: Beige Shetland wool ("Cozi") with my white llama ("Izaak").

Batch 6: Beige Shetland wool ("Cozi") with mohair from my red Angora goat ("Walter").

Most of the cloud will be available for sale on my website (see link to the right) shortly. I am spinning Batch 6 so that I can dye it using a technique I call "ply dye." I like to think that I invented this technique, but I seriously doubt that is the case. I will be featuring the process on an upcoming blog entry in the near future. Stay tuned.

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