Tour de Fleece

We are in week 3 of the Tour de Fleece challenge and I must admit that I have been spinning everyday (including rest days).  I put a lot of alpaca fiber on the drop spindle it looked so full.  Alas once I made it into a ball and skeined it – not so much.  The fiber was smooth as a single but became coarse as I twisted it.  I am thinking this yarn is not for close to skin wear maybe a hat or something.  It is a pretty brown color but just not as soft as Sophie Mae’s cloud fiber.
Alpaca Cloud
The Lincoln wool top has been partially spun into yarn.  This is my first true long wool and it took some time to get a rhythm on the wheel to take up the fiber smoothly.  I had the same take up issues with plying but I am hoping the bath smooths things out.  It definitely has a cotton candy sort of look to the yarn and I still have half of the top to spin up too.
Lincoln wool
Romney fleece
The Romney fleece has been divided in half and scoured (cleaned).  I tried a new method that I have been reading about on Ravelry which is to soak the wool in cold water overnight to loosen the dirt.  Once removed one can scour the grease off the wool much better.  I must say that it did remove alot of the overall dirt and sand from the wool my only problem was I just stuck the fiber in the cold water without in thought of preserving lock formation.  It was a little difficult to scour locks once they had opened up onto one another but not too bad.  This batch will be spun worsted on the Louet – I have 2 1/2 baggies full of clean fiber to spin up. 
Merino/Silk yarn
My LYS want 400 yd of homespun yarn – I do not know if my wheel can deliver such yardage in the fingering weight class.  The merino wool/silk blend top when plied had the bobbin nearly full to the rim and it only yielded 240yd at 22 wpi with a worsted spun method.  The yarn is shiny and beautiful but no where near 400 yd and I used 4oz of top to create it.  I am thinking of striving for 250 yd of fingering weight on a consistent basis and believe if I go lace weight I could definitely get 400 yd due to the thinness of the fibers but plying lace weight is labor intensive.

I still have not blocked the scarf or doily as of yet perhaps today.  On the business front I received the check for my first wholesale order – must take a photo before depositing.  I need to check on how to endorse it into the business account too.  I will be at the Renaissance Festival next weekend and will try to get an idea of what items (yarn/fiber) have sold thus far.  I am excited to spin cotton in public and she has 3 wheels for me to try out for spinning fibers too.  I am going to demonstrate on Saturday and Sunday as I am sure the crowd make up will be different on both days.  I will clean the rest of the CVM wool so I can make rolags with the yak fiber as part of the demonstration and spin that on a wheel too.  The Romney will probably stay at home as it is a white/ivory color and I don’t want it to get a lot of dirt spun into from being outside.  Hoping our afternoon/evening thunderstorms will be over by next weekend but we shall see.


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