Weird Wool Wednesday: visitors

This weekend a friend is coming to stay with me. She likes wool.

I’m wondering if she likes wool enough so that I do not have to unearthen the guest bed in the wool room guest bedroom:


Here it is:
Underneath the fleeces and dye pots and spinning wheel accessoires and handpainted lemonade glasses I inherited from my grandmother. Hey, we could have lemonade! Perhaps that will distract her enough.


Tour de Fleece: finish line


the last week of the Tour de Fleece I made these collages:

“carding”……………………”needs combing”……….”cat castle”…………..”where you at with your string?”



On Day 21 I didn’t spin but went to a wedding at the beach. It was lovely!



and that concludes the Tour de Fleece. I spun nearly every day and it was really fun, in a relaxed way. No feverish goals or gnashing teeth trying to accomplish them. Instead I sat under the tree and carded and spun or I sat inside and watched the Tour on TV and spun or combed wool.

A lovely time.

Besides this being its own reward I got three bonusses out of this:

1. I’m still spinning. The Tour has ended but I’m still carding rollags and spinning Long Draw

2. I got a prize!! The international Tour de Fleece crowd on awards random prizes every day and one day I won! I was free to chose a prize from the impressing mountain of prizes that shops or individuals had offered. Including international shipping!

I chose a sheep mug by Rivers Edge Fiber Arts


3. I won another prize!! The Dutch people of the Dutch Karma Group over on Ravelry are a tight and generous bunch. We all participated in Team Karma and we all offered a prize.

I offered this Sock Wool Spinners Parcel, by Jeanet Koek. These are three breeds of roving (Texel, LaPlata and Wensleydale). You get two rovings of each. All six rovings are dyed the same.

As you spin it and later ply them into a 3ply you get a sockyarn that transits through all the colours, giving you socks that have yellow toes, purple heels and blue cuffs.

My team mate Meta from Kleurvol won and chose this prize. Tomorrow I am going to bring it to her.

I myself chose an offer made by Pimmie who loves Long Draw spinning as much as I do. She will dye wool and some of her bunny fluff (angora rabbit) and card them into rolags for me. All I have to do is spin it! A great prize ūüôā

Weird Wool Wednesday: Summer Knitting

I need to finish up three sweaters and knit 12 blocks for the blanket and crochet 4 cats for my other blanket. I have three lace shawls on the needles. Three fleeces on two spinning wheels (this requires planning and shuffling skills) and another two raw fleeces waiting to be skirted and washed. I have various projects planned for July (which is running out fast!) and still some plans left over from June. There is silk, linen and cotton waiting on my table to be made into typical Summer projects.

yet somehow:

I’m cranking out mitts like nobody’s business.

It’s the only thing I do. It’s a sweltering 34 degrees Celsius over here, a heatwave we are not used to. Wool is sticking to my hands. Who needs mitts now? Still I have queued another two patterns for mitts and am looking through the stash for fitting yarns.


Weird Wool Wednesday: dressed for the party

I had this wool party last week, it was a wonderful party!

We sat in the shade, spinning wool, talking, eating cake. We gave wool and yarn to the birthday girl. We shared stories. Our wheels kept spinning. One person was spindling and had the most beautiful wooden accessoires which we all admired. We talked about wool, silk and life.

A lovely day.

I had managed to do everything right: drove myself safely to her house; brought a nice gift; brought food; brought spinning wheel, wool and back up knitting; knew the names of all the people who were there; didn’t trip over my toes when I walked to her door; didn’t say anything silly while participating in the conversation. I was doing fine!

It only took me one hour to realize I was wearing my felted dress inside out.

Second week of Tour de Fleece

On day ten the Tour rested.

It has been a weird, intense and marvellous week!

Let me summarize the days for you:

Day 8: I started plying. Plying is tedious work, I prefer to start early, before all the singles are spun, so I do not have to do the plying all at the end. Plying a bobbin of this size will easily take 3 hours….First skein finished.

Day 9: Needed to comb more wool for the singles of the second skein. I also started to investigate and comb some of the green wool I want to spin afterwards.

Day 10: a rest day in the Tour. I spend it in the city, having my eyes checked out.

Day 11: I drove myself and the cat back to the cabin. In the morning I had met with my GP/doctor and had explained about some scientific thing I’m doing to regain my health (I’ve had my genome sequenced, identified which enzymes are not working because of DNA mutations and have started supplementing for them. Slooooowly. The doctor was delighted! But the appointment took all my energy.)

I managed to get us home safe and spun a little sitting under the tree while the sun set.

Day 12: a weird, fabulous day! I did not do any spinning. Instead I was a true paper hero and analyzed both technical research papers and county policies and drafted a paper that I send off to court. I have never done a thing like that but the energy I got from it was amazing, just like it was when I was still healthy and had my wits about me. A totally unexpected venture with totally unexpected results and new friends among the neighbours.

Day 13: celebrating the birthday of a lovely woman who appreciates wool, nature and harmony. I spun singles and plied it. Skein two is done. I got some real good advice how to approach the third skein.

Day 14: a day of recuperation. I played with my spindle and some Swifter locks I got from a friend, to try out. Wonderful breed! But overall I’m very tired and slept most of the day away.

Tour de Fleece First Week Collages

Tour de Fleece is one week on its way. Here are the collages I made showing results for each day:

(Yeah…. day 7 was not a fun day.) Overall I am happily spinning purple and doing so outside, under the red beech tree. There are wonderful smells in the air, now that various flowers bloom.

I do wish I had put more time into preparing the wool. There are some white coarse hairs in this fleece and they will make the yarn more scratchy. If only I had combed them all out…

The first bobbin I spun with the nice fibre, with few coarse hairs. Now I am left with the coarser pieces and spinning is less fun that way. Still, better soldier on. I am looking forward to having a two ply yarn of this colour. And a garment from it.

Then I want to get started on that greenblue fleece. Which needs to be prepped first.

I cannot decide how to prep it. It is Clun Forest. It has no coarse hairs. It is quite frizzy though. And soft. Excellent for Long Draw spinning! Which is a favourite technique of mine. But I don’t like the weel I have for that. ¬†And the right prep would mix the colour into an uniform green. Which might not be a bad thing in itself, if you dream of owning a forest gren dragon cardigan. Which I do.

Spinning from the locks will give more colour variation. And more colour experience while spinning. Easier spinning too, more relaxed. For that I could comb each lock but I would lose quite a lot of the fibre with short staple lengths, which is perfectly spinnable especially with Long Draw. I hate to throw away good fibre.

I could card the fleece on my drum carder. Fast, clean. Ready to spin. Only that would mix the colours again. And I don’t like spinning from batts very much. I don’t know why.

One additional problem with Long Draw is that I will be travelling to and from the city in the next two weeks and I need to decide upfront which spinning wheel will live where and what technique I will use on it. And, as you may have guessed from Collage Day 7, I am not in the best condition to think and plan ahead at the moment.

I’ve got wool problems!

Green luxury problems.