Soft as Silk

Sammi the llama is guard and protector of Round Table Farm’s flock of Icelandic sheep.

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This spring Sammi was sheared at the same time as the sheep and his wool was available for our first Fleece Sale at the FibreWorks Studio & Gallery (see blog May 11, 2015).

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Deanna, Merrily and Lynda D. shared his fleece.

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Then the work of processing his fleece began.  Lynda and Merrily got together in Merrily’s backyard to process their share of the fleece.

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Lynda and Merrily worked for 4 hours picking vegetable matter from his super soft inner and outer coat.  They discovered he had shiny guard hairs and decided to separate them after washing.

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At the end of a long day they had a small basket with second cuts, a small basket with the start of the guard hair collection and two large baskets of lovely soft llama wool ready to be washed.

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The next day the old outdoor bathtub in Merrily’s backyard made a good wash station.

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After washing, the wool was laid out on screens to dry.

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Not a drop of the wash and rinse water was wasted.  Merrily and Lynda carried buckets and buckets from the tub to the garden.

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Merrily brought Sammi’s wool to the next Spin-in.  There was still some vegetable matter to remove.

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Then she carded it, deciding to leave in the guard hairs.

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And then she set to work spinning.

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Meanwhile, Deanna was working with her share of Sammi’s wool.  She carefully separated out the guard hairs.  She hopes to have enough of the inner fleece to spin into fingerling weight wool for Mechthilde to knit a Downton Abbey camisole.  The guard hairs will be combined with the togs of Prince and Ginger for a special Icelandic shawl.

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Sammi’s inner coat, like that of the Thormanby Island alpacas and the Laughlin Creek llamas, is luxuriously soft.  The inner wool of the alpacas and llamas is our new local ‘silk’ for all our Fibreshed project needs.

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Merrily, Lynda D., Deanna B. Pilling

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3 thoughts on “Soft as Silk

  1. Barbara

    Again, Merrily & Fibre Friends…………. an outstganding Blog. Great photos. And I can almost feel the silkiness of the fleece from your wrirings ! Well done.

    Reply

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