Fibre Day

Last Tuesday we had a fibre preparation day.  We had wool, alpaca and mohair, some undyed, some already coloured and some dyed by us, mostly Lyn and Bev.  We ended up with quite a number of bags of fibre turned out on the table so we sorted it into a few colour groups and combined everything by hand.  Then it all went through the picker in batches and the result was many bags of fluffy fibre ready for us all to spin into gorgeous art yarns.  Next to share up and get spinning!  (click on any of the above photos for a larger version).

Don’t call me “Wooly”

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Meet Al Packer – a friendly fellow from Bumble Hill Alpaca Stud who carefully watched over the proceedings when Guild members participated in the Fiftieth Anniversary Mangrove Mountain and Districts Country Fair. Alpaca’s don’t have wool, they have fleece – and the resulting fibre is highly prized by both spinners and clothing makers. Alpaca fleece comes across a wide, natural colour spectrum ranging from white, through many shades of brown to black. The fibre also readily accepts dyeing.

Clothing made from alpaca fleece is known to be warm, durable, light weight, and not scratchy to the skin.

Wool Preparation Day

Every now and then we spend a day preparing some fibre to make some art yarn together.  We decide upon a theme for the colours, then go through the fibre stash to see what we have in complementary colours that match our chosen theme.  This time, there was some wool that we had prepared on a previous dyeing day, some natural brown wool, and a multitude of small amounts of wool, alpaca and mohair, some bright and some not.

DSCF4095We toss all the fibre together on a large table, everyone grabbing handfuls to pull apart to get all the different colours and fibres mixed together.  There’s always lots of friendly chatter during this part of the process, with wool jumping around the table and alpaca fibres floating up our noses.  Next we use the picker to separate all the fibres and get some air into the mix.  There is less chatter during this part of the process because nobody wants to get their fingers caught in the picker!

DSCF4097Once all the fibre is done we take a bagful each and spin chunky singles, then a couple of us normally volunteer to ply with something suitably fine, and voila!  We have some gorgeous art yarn to sell at our next exhibition.