Bellefeathers! 25 January 2008

Welcome spinners and felters! I can hardly believe, I have 15 different Totally Tubular Spinning Kits to offer. And felters, see the lovely Paint Pots, ready for making lovely felted pieces with their painter's pallette of warms or cools. The Tubular colorways are shown here:

Next up on the website (later today, here's hoping!) will be Forrester top whorl spindles -- Linums, Geometrics, and fun shapes (my apologies, the Dervishes sold out -- but I will put up a Dervish page so you can sign up for email notification of the arrivals there - thanks!!) and a new flock of Natalie spindles!

My daughter and I are starting up an etsy store, By Our Hands, with handspun and more in it. Okay, so far, handspun! more to follow :-)

Raw FleeceWhat's This?

I've cleared my basement of fleeces now. Since the equipment's all gone, there's no reason to keep it around, and plenty to get it processed and out of any moth's way. So far, I've kept fleeces isolated for their protection: each fleece is bagged, sealed, and then 2-3 are put in a cardboard box, also sealed. I use 6-mil plastic bags, as moths are deterred by thicker plastics as well as cardboard.

Much of the rest is off to various processors:
  • Zeilinger's, 12 fleeces (8 are CVM, I'm splurging on combed top, oo la la, also a Merino/Finn, a NZ halfbreed, 2 lamb Black Welsh Mountain) -- they sent me a 25% off processing roving coupon, that started the whole clear-out.
  • Stonehedge, 3 fleeces (CVM and my own llama, to be blended) -- she has a return shipping special this month
  • Ohio Valley Natural Fibers, 2 fleeces (Hog Island) -- they had a coupon!
  • Morro Fleece Works, 4 fleeces (2 cormo, one lincoln/cormo, one CVM) -- no special, but I heard she does wonderfully on fine wools like Cormo. I'm going to see how her pin-draft CVM compares to the combed top (since it doesn't have the 16 pound minimum combed top has!)
Can you tell, there was alot of CVM in my stash! I still have about 6 fleeces -- some Jacob, Dorset, Ryeland (from the UK), a Romney cross. They're all going to the local processor, Taylored Fibers (no website), his machine does great open roving on medium wools. I'm also washing 4 fleeces myself (Merino, Romney, Gotland, Icelandic) and had some washed fleeces too (yay!), those I may card, blend, dye, and save for my Learning to Spin class when we hand-card and hand-comb. Aside: Curious about these sheep breeds for spinning or felting? See How do I know what sheep breed to look for? Enough of me prattling on about fleeces, sheesh!! Probably makes you wonder how I ended up with it all. It was a long, over-splurging process carried out several years ago during a "life transition". There were almost 200 fleeces at one time -- I sold over 100 of them at cost or less, still raw, in the first clear-out. Nice to be able to turn (almost all!) of the rest of it into nice roving. And, what will I do with all that lovely roving? This is the shop newsletter, so you can guess! Sell some, spin some, have fun with it all! My guess is the earliest returns may be 2 months, more will be 4-6 months out. If you can't wait for all of that to come back, there's lovely medium wool available in the California Red wool roving, and some lovely fine Shetland from Thistlehill Farms and my own Shetland Rainbow kit. Stay updated -- subscribe to the whole blog for regular spinning tips and news, SpinTips for links to spinning tips I find on the internet, or Bellefeathers for the Bellefeathers newsletter (for Bellefeathers by email use this link). Thanks, and happy spinning and felting!

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