Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Trust me, it’s not what you think. I’m not pregnant and I’m not busy feathering my “nest”. I’ve been busy making little fiber nests out of combed merino fleece that I scored on my visit mid-February to Lynn’s Fantasy Farm in Pearisburg during sheep shearing day. I came home with Dinah and Alice’s beautiful fleeces and upon the owner’s strong suggestion, sought out some combs vs. hand cards. I borrowed a friend’s Louet/Edward Scissorhands like combs and combed the freshly scoured fleece before rolling them into nests.

Dinah's Fleece 2009 (merino)

Gorgeous Fleece

Dyed merino locks
Washed and dyed locks

Combed merino nests Purple merino nestsRed and orange merino nests
Lots of loverly little nests

Plied handspun hand-dyed merino yarn
Spun and plied yarn

Finished plied merino yarn
Close up of colors

Merino Yarn 18 wpi
Finished Yarn

While I’m all about the process, the hand combing merino thing is a lot of work. And there’s a great deal of lost fiber. However, it’s equally difficult to find a fiber mill that a.) takes in small amounts of fleece to comb into top and b.) hard to find a mill that even combs fiber into top. Long story short, I’m going to have to buy some more fleece so that I can hit Zeilinger’s (http://www.zwool.com) minimum and hope that it will be ready in time for me to pick it up at Maryland Sheep and Wool in May. It will be worth it. It’s a dream to spin top and this merino is fabulous stuff.

Thing Two and I had a blast at Lynn’s farm though it was mighty cold that day.

Sheep Shearing Day 2009
The shearer hard at work

Watchful dog
Her two dogs were the sweetest creatures I’ve ever encountered and her flock was well cared for and very loved.

We got right to work, skirting fleece. I was stunned that Thing Two jumped right in because there was lots of icky stuff to pick out on the skirting table. He simply donned some rubber gloves and went to work. What a trooper! I hope that we can make it again next year.

Thing II Skirting Fleece
Thing Two at the skirting table

Fleece skirting table