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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Gone Batty!

My latest personal project is the wet felting of some chair pads, or a runner for my dresser, haven't exactly decided yet.  To complete this project I will need lots, and lots, of wool.  Sooooooo, I dug through my stash and pulled out my washed Navajo Churro fleece, which looked like this before washing.   
I spent about two weeks picking the washed locks apart by hand and taking out any large clumps of kemp (rough hairy fibers found in primitive breeds).  Once I had a bunch of fluffy wuffy wooly, I carded it on my drum carder.

I carded, and carded, and carded some more.  In fact, having never carded an entire (pretty much - saved a few pieces for needle felting a cute long haired doggie) fleece before I was amazed at the volume of batts I could make!  Here's a vid of the carder in action. 


The best results are had by adding a small amount of fleece at a time. Once carded the batts are carefully removed. All told, I carded 15 huge batts! They made a Navajo Churro mountain, and when I laid them out on my 8 foot work table they carpeted it two layers deep. ")

See? 

Maybe I will be able to make my chair pads and a runner after all.  Oooooohhhh, all the buttery goodness!  But first, a lion.  ROAR!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Fun with fiber!

Long time no post.  Life keeps getting in the way of my hobbies.  Tsk, tsk, tsk.  This weekend has been a fun fibery one!  A new spindle arrived, that I'm planning to use to spin some lovely lama down, you can see them here .  It's called the colt, so being horse related, I figured it was for me. 

In addition, my family and I enjoyed some Easter egg dying.  In the spirit of frugality, we used the extra dye to paint up some wool.  I layed it out in waves in an old pyrex baking dish.  My kids took turns squirting it with the leftover dye.  It looked like this when all the dye was used up:

Next, I popped it in the oven and baked it at 200 degrees for about 2 hours.  I've seen this referred to on Facebook as a spinner's dinner.  I wouldn't recommend consumption, but it sure looked yummy!

After dyeing, rinsing, and drying, I braided it up and it looks SWEET!

The colors are somewhat muted but truly lovely.  I think this will make a fantastic yarn.  I'm going to crochet it up into an Easter bunny before next year.

In addition, today I paid a visit to a local alpaca farm.  I came away with fleece, of course.  I'm not really sure where I'm going to put it while I work through my stash, but it is soooo soft I want to lay down on it and go to sleep.  First batch is washing as I speak! 

I hope you have a terrific Easter or Passover as your beliefs dictate, or a terrific day if your beliefs dictate neither!


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