Posts tagged ‘fiber prep’

My local Costco started carrying commercial cookware, so now in addition to dubious non-stick frying pans by the multi-pack I can buy baking pans that are larger than my entire stove.

But those big rimmed baking sheets actually make nice work trays. I often deal with VM-filled fleece by sitting on the couch with a box and a flicker, so this is basically a much larger box. (Put a towel under it, that metal is cold!) I can also see kitchen table fiber painting happening.

This photo was thrown together for demonstration, but that indeed is some filthy Suffolk fleece that will be turned into socks:


I carded batts of black Merino top and started spinning. Even from the fold with a broken-off section of fiber, it handled just like the original top. So I’m going to have to go with the damp technique. The small bit of batt I sprayed down and let dry is much improved, so I’ll be doing that to each one in turn.

A while back I started messing with some swap fiber I didn’t know what to do with. I still don’t, but I’m pressing on and now making yarn I don’t know what to do with. Some person will undoubtedly be getting a gift before this is over. But I need to stop with the acrylic baby knitting for a while and go back to a fiber that has some connection to an actual organic substance.

I took the carded multi-color single and plied it with two more of carded black Merino. I’d been looking for something not so fine, a better match for the original fiber, but then Paradise Fibers had a sale. I hand carded a little to do this sample:

black, purple and green yarn

I’m not totally thrilled with the black because I don’t like how mill-processed Merino top handles. Dampening it and letting it dry might improve it, but I’m too lazy to go that far. The fiber is also a little too long to draft well as a woolen. I’m always a little reluctant to make something that I’m not completely in love with from the beginning, but it will look and feel a lot different when it’s done. And I would never wear anything with chartreuse anyway, so I don’t have to get attached to it. It’s supposed to be an experiment.

Right now I’m in the middle of carding the 160g of black to go with the 80g of single already spun. Even if it weren’t too long to nicely hand card, I’d do it on the drum carder because there is so much to do and no concern for maintaining distinct colors. Carding commercial top is not as easy as one might imagine, it’s very dense. Just like Merino fleece, you have to open it up a lot to get good results. But it doesn’t handle like fleece, it acts more like fiber with almost no crimp.

I got a sample of the fiber we are using for Maker Faire and started experimenting with it. The discussion is rather long and has several photos, so I’ve put it on a new page rather than a blog post. You can find it here: Spinning Karaoke Wool/Soy Silk Blend.

More of the BFL recovery going on. I don’t need it for Maker Faire but I’ll do something with it so it’s still an ongoing project. I have one bobbin done and a box of fiber ready to spin.

Box of BFL

One day it will be finished 3-ply yarn. Right now it’s a box of wool. I split the top and pulled it thinner, I also have a plastic bag full of the neps removed in the process.

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