Friday, February 15, 2008

some shetland

Remember that Shetland Fleece that I received from Cathy? I have been working on it.

If you really want to see some interesting notes on Spinning Shetland, be sure to have a look at Leigh's Fiber Journal. I have been so impressed with the work she is doing, and I have been learning a lot about the breed from her writings. I am grateful that she has recorded her findings....

This is my first experience with a Shetland Fleece. I had nothing to physically compare it with, so I did some reading.

What I learned....

I'm working with what I believe to be a dual coated, or beaver fleece...(one of 3 main fleece types recognized by the NASSA)...it fits the criteria

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1. Staple length 6-10 inch range
2. Outer coat is hairy, inner coat soft and downy.

Once I had scoured the fleece, I tried sending it through my drum carder, but was not happy with the results. First of all, there was still lots of Vegetation to be picked out and secondly, the inner coat seemed to be forming neps. While the dual coat can certainly be spun together, I was not satisfied with the spin. By this, I mean that the spinning process was not enjoyable to me because the neps and VM were causing slubs and intrrupting the flow and the rhythm of my spinning.

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So I choose another method of preparing the fiber for spinning. It involved a teasing tool. Eventually, the tool wound up being C-clamped directly to the side of my Ashford.

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Most of the inner coat was removed with this method of preparation. I began to set it (the inner coat) aside, and will (at a later date) put this through the drum and see if the resulting fiber is more to my liking. It still contains some of the outer coat...you can identify it by the thickness .

Once the lock was teased, the spin was joyful!! Drafting and drawing the fibers out of the lock was effortless....

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...resulting in a nice plied yarn that measures 22 to 24 wraps per inch...a lace weight perhaps...with an unknown destiny...

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Although, I am listening carefully....it has not yet whispered to me what it wants to be when it grows up....

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19 comments:

elizabeth said...

What a fabulous old ruler you have! Love those fancy numbers! The yarn is gorgeous, I need to get back to my Shetland fleece.

pacalaga said...

lovely!

Cathy said...

Your photography always knocks me out - gorgeous position. Very interesting how you are spinning. I'll have to keep that in mind. I still have a dozen washed Shetlands awaiting attention...

Anne said...

It is beautiful, even if it just stays a skein for a while, before it grows up. :)

Beth S. said...

It must have taken you ages to spin that yarn, if you had to separate the fibers like that! But I daresay the results were worth it. I just love those last two pictures!

Valerie said...

Nice yarn! I love those niddy noddy shots!

judy said...

Beautiful! The lovely fine lace wt. yarn, did you find that this was spun mostly from the 6-10" fiber? Was the resulting yarn lustrous and more like a mohair? The pictures are wonderful.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

This fleece reminds me of Luna's coat. She has a double coat. Short and shorter. Ha...

Beautiful yarn you have ended up with. I can't wait until it whispers a fun project into your ear and we can see what develops.

Have a great weekend. I hope you are thawing out some now. The ice is gone here...for now.

Leigh said...

I was very interested in your impressions of the Shetland from Cathy. I agree that drumcarding wasn't the best option with this fiber (though that didn't stop me from doing it :). You made a good preparation choice and your yarn is gorgeous!

Donna B said...

It looks wonderful! Thanks for the link to the Shetland info!

Sharon said...

What fantastic and fine spinning! Love the photos too! And I'm looking forward to seeing it when it 'grows up'!

Lola said...

It wants to be a shawl, I can tell that! ;-)

Leslie said...

I'm not a fiber person (yet) so your posts frequently leave me intrigued and confused. neps? slubs?

I don't want an explanation, I can google with the best of them. I'm just letting you know where I'm coming from, and that I still find it interesting.

Thank you, again, for wonderful photographs and letting me eavesdrop on the world of fiber.

vi said...

oh my....PERFECT little laceweight
just begging to be made into a shetland shawl
vi

Rurality said...

Well I didn't understand half of what you said, but wow, it's pretty! Wish I could reach out and touch it. :)

The Gingerbread House said...

I've not seen the tool you have clampted to your wheel... used in my short time in the Spinning world! Is it one that can be bought or something out of the mind of Miss Cyndy? You keep me busy watching you :o) Ginng B.

Marie said...

How beautiful! I love the faint variations in the color of the final yarn. I have some Shetland in the stash that I have yet to try my hand at. I think it just jumped to the beginning of the spinning queue.

dawn said...

mmm...gorgeous!

cindy said...

Tell me more about this teasing tool. I have soon long staple shetland as well.

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