But in a good way.
I cleaned the Jacob’s fleece (bought from a weaving/spinng Guild member in May) and the CVM/Corriedale fleece I bought at the wool market this weekend. I also had 8 oz of an alpaca fleece that I needed to clean, too. I am not telling how long that’s been around.
Well. That was a job and a half.
I did some things differently from before. No soup pot this time. I cranked up the temperature on the hot water heater and used the bathtub, considering the quantity. I have been assured that the soapy lanolin water won’t plug up the drain. It didn’t.
I was able to lay the fleeces out on the patio after towel drying for some nice, airy, drying in the sun. The Cat Who Is Queen watched them carefully. Best Dog Ever protected them from the squirrels.
I used lingerie bags, which worked very well, but think before I do this again, I will get some medium sized plastic baskets to keep the locks intact and prevent the little matting that occurred.
So. The alpaca was exceptionally clean, and is almost ready for carding. The Jacob is now mostly teased and I was a bit surprised with it. The last Jacob I had must have been very well skirted. I am still learning from my experiences. They are sheep after all, and barnyard animals!
The difference between the Jacob and CVM/Corriedale fleeces in texture and staple and feel is remarkable. I know about both from reading. The C/C is a ‘fine wool’, while the Jacob usually falls under the heading of ‘other’. But I have spun Jacob roving, and prepped 2 bs of Jacobs before. I know Jacob better.
I can’t wait to get to know the CVM/Corriedale better. I think I will have about five pounds to do so. I hope we get along.
The plan is to card by hand, practicing the technique learned at the workshop at the wool market. And when bored with that, I may rent a drum carder from the Weaver's/Spinner's Guild. But again, there is something to be said about getting to know wool by working with it.
It feels good to have all the raw fleeces cleaned. It was a lot of work.