Fiber Mill adventure

Well I did make it to the mill on Saturday eventhough my bronchitis did not appreciate the journey.  I took a tour of the entire operations from washing the fleeces, to drying, picking, carding and finally creating yarn from them.  Learned not to care so much about keeping the lock formation of the fleeces being sent to the mill but concentrate on shaking out the dirt and checking that the length is uniform. 

I brought the black Llama fleece I purchased as an example and Andrew (Spring Too Fiber Mill) helped me choose the fiber to add to it (soy silk) and what percentage to add (10%).  I choose this fleece for its softness which one doesn’t generally associate with Llama fibers.  We talked about the strength of the fibers as it relates to textile processes and some of the benefits of combining different fibers together to complement/enhance one another.  So in about a month I will get a roving made from the black llama fleece with white soy silk spread throughout it.  Having spun up a similar type of roving I am anxious to see how mine will turn out.  Within the next year I will need to take some fiber sorting classes to aid in choosing fleeces and help me improve the material I will be offering for resale on Etsy. 
My March goal is to research fiber combinations (alpaca/wool; alpaca/bamboo) and learn the pros and cons of blending fibers and for what use.  It was an educational day and well worth the drive.  I am excited to see the end results of the raw fiber I will send to the mill this spring.  I’ll be sure to post pictures so that others can share in the journey.
Sunday was my day of spinning yarn.  I spun up the red roving into yarn for the fingerless mittens order and plied my pretty bluish/red roving which turned out to be more purple/red (see pics below).  You can see a picture of the actual roving in my Flickr album.  It was a productive weekend, one filled with rest and minimal human interaction which are always a treat for me.

Colors came through
better here


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