My sister delivered Mr. Jacob to my home this week (Thank you Michelle!)
**If you have no idea who Mr. Jacob is, check out my blog post on buying my first unprocessed fleece!
After smelling up my bathroom for a few days, I have finally found the time to open the fleece up, explore it's natural colour variations, and start the cleaning process!
I think this fleece is beautiful - there is quite a bit of dirt, lanolin and some vegetable matter (aka "work ahead of me"), but there is an amazing range of colours within this spotted fleece. I have decided to separate the fleece into four or five different colours and drum card them separately. I will then design and knit a project that will showcase the wide range of values in this fleece. I was going to spin all the different tones together, but I don't want to loose any the contrast of this fleece. After doing some internet research, I was the most inspired by the finished handspun yarn posted in this blog post here.
I started by laying the fleece on the floor over my trusty shower curtain. I roughly sorted the fibre into two bags - one of lighter colours, one of browns/blacks.
There appears to be much more white in the fleece than brown (which I expected), but I will sort out the colours again once the fleece is clean and I can see the subtle colour variations properly.
I started the soaking the white fibre in water. I will let it sit overnight to loosen the suint and dirt, and I will start the scouring process over the next day or two. When I feel like I have this portion of the fleece under control, I will start the same process with the darker fibre.
More updates coming soon...!
**A wee little disclaimer - for the record, no sheep were harmed in the making of this blog post! One person had misunderstood some of the photos posted earlier and thought I had purchased a sheep SKIN instead of just the fleece, and was alarmed by my purchase. Don't worry, the sheep my wool came from is ALIVE, happy and healthy and ready to grow another fleece for next season! I am supporting local farmers and happy sheep with this endeavour!**