Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Journey into Babs

I tried to find a pic of Babs before shearing, but didn't have one that was clear.
She looks really funny now, so I wont embarrass her by posting a naked pic either.

I will show you pics of her fleece in processing :)

I noticed this year, that her fleece looked good on. Why I didn't notice last year, or the year before (she is three), I cant imagine. She is one of my 'stupid' sheep; she has always, and will always think I'm going to eat her. So, maybe I tend to ignore her because she just agrivates me.
I even had her up for sale and have renigged on that now that I have handled her fleece. I will coat her and her mother this year
If you click to biggify, you will see (maybe you can see them anyway) the little tiny bits of vm that I contend with. These are bits of alfalfa that are either thrown on the sheep durring feeding (kids say they dont do that... yeah), or bits blown into their wool in the wind; actually, I think its both. Whatever it is, they are easy enough to get out, if not a bit messy. I put my monks cloth on my lap (I toyed with the idea of doing Swedish Weaving for a while, now I have all these nice pieces of monk's cloth), and flick card the locks; the junk just lands on the cloth and I have a nice flicked lock to put in my box...
There is usually still some vm left in the flicked lock, but it comes out readily while spinning.

Carding on the Clemes & Clemes (I LOVE MY CARDER!!)
I dont know how every body else does it, but after I get the batt off the carder, I pull it into strips and then attenuate the strip down to about a quarter to a half inch and wrap it around my left hand.
This is what I spin from.

And....

Viola! Wow! This is some nice wool! I'm not sure why, but wool with the texture that this has is more appealing to me than say merino, or other fine wools. Babs' wool has almost the same texture as the grey CVM cross I love so much so, that I bought the sheep that grows it!

So, now I'm off to flick more, to start the whole process again. Damn! I love my life! :)

7 comments:

Mim said...

Great fleece! Cleans up nice and when you coat her it will be that much better. It does look fun to spin.

Sharon said...

Oh gorgeous. I agree with you - wool with character over fine wool any day.

Jody said...

I get that same goose bumpy feeling around new fibre all the time too :)
That fleece looks soft and I see a nice sheen to it. Looks even nicer when spun by you Becky. I am still waiting for my carder!

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Your last little paragraph made me smile so big! And I envy all your time to play in the wool. Thank-you for sharing the process and photos; you always do such wonderful work!

Laura said...

Ok, I need more fleece like a hole in the head, but could you send me some? Please, Please, Please? It is really nice...

Kathy said...

Gorgeous - both fleece and yarn!

I know what you mean abou thte tiny vm pieces, Becks...I went back to coats this year. I feed grass hay, then pelleted grass or, when I can get it, pelleted alfalfa. The trouble is to get pelleted alfalfa I have to order a whole pallet of pellets from our feed dealer. It stores great in a dry place (50 bags to a pallet). The best thing is no waste, no vm from them. And no waste due to wind or picky eaters either!
I bought a bale of alfalfa this spring for a recovering ewe I had and the darned leaf went everywhere in the barn and in the wind. All I saw was money blowing all over, so I think I will try the pellets again.

June said...

That sure is some nice wool! You make "bird nests" the same way I do, so . . . it must be right, eh?