What a hot day we have had here today, a whopping 40 degrees. It's a little too much really when there are things you want to get on and do. The heat always makes me feel tired. However, I cooked lunch early today ~ I made Meatball Subs from Smittenkitchen. They were totally yummy and I highly recommend the recipe.
Secondly, we haven't moved house yet, there's a major delay due to the recent quakes.....I shall say no more. We should have moved in on Friday but now it's going to be at least another week and a bit away. So, what to do?
We have been at a bit of a loose end this weekend because of this, everything is packed up and ready to go, a lot of our possessions have now gone into storage (did I tell you the house we are moving to is roughly only a third of the size of this house ~ it will be fun!).
Since most of my knitting, sewing and other craft stuff is in storage for the time being, and I didn't want to knit anyway on such a hot day, I decided to make a start washing one of the fleeces I have had stored in a box for a while (glad I purposely left this one out of the storage pile).
This particular fleece is Romney, and is from a sheep that lives very local to me. I decided to wash the fleece using the little at a time method. So firstly I picked out the locks and tried to get a nice mix of the colours that run through the fleece ~ I wrapped them in a laundry bag, next I soaked them in hand hot water with pure soap added for about 10 minutes. Then I drained the filthy water and did the same thing again. It was rinsed in hot water twice but I left the fleece to cool in the water on the last rinse. I gave it a quick spin in my fibre spinner (a salad spinner) and laid it out to dry on racks on the patio. It was so hot that after an hour I turned it over and it was totally dry. The fleece has retained some of the lanolin and has the most lovely smell (I'm a secret fibre sniffer).
This is a picture taken before washing the locks. The colour range in this fleece is beautiful, from cream through to the deepest bluey grey although the majority is differing shades of browns.
I'm going to prepare all of the fleece in this way and card it on my drum carder. I will spin it into a worsted weight 2 ply yarn. It's a large fleece (approx 4 kg), so this is going to be an ongoing project for quite a while yet. I don't know what it will end up becoming, my Hubby and my Brother have both said they would like a sweater from it. I wanted to knit a nice throw for my new home, but I do have a pile of different coloured Shetland combed top to spin that I had sort of earmarked for that project. So we will have to wait and see. I do think it needs to be made into something special, after all ~ I read something the other day that said how a hand spinner will put between 200-300 hours work into a fleece, starting with the washing through to the finished product.
I have put a pair of small batts of this Romney fibre into my shop, I have 2 more to list later but that will be it ~ it's all I'm willing to part with!