Working with imperfect fleece: part 1, initial evaluation and washing

We spinners in particular parts of the globe at the beginning of the twenty-first century have been pretty spoiled by the availability of clean, combed or carded, organized, sweet-smelling fiber. Lots of that fiber has been dyed luscious colors. We see, we want, we buy, we take home, we spin (and we blog). There are … Read more

News from Estes Park: Keep the Fleece contest

At the Estes Park Wool Market, I learned about an upcoming project being sponsored by Wild Fibers magazine, along with some other folks. Called Keep the Fleece, it pertains to topics I care a great deal about—and I’m working on a related project myself. There will be a web site, but it is not active … Read more

A dog at home

This is Tussah (yes, she’s named after a wild silk). We are Tussah’s third home that we know about. She was apparently dropped off at a reservoir in North Dakota several years before she joined our household. Someone from our city saw her being abandoned, picked her up, and brought her south to their local … Read more

Estes Park Wool Market: some comments, and a few goats and sheep

The Estes Park Wool Market was held near the roof of the Rocky Mountains this weekend, and I was there both days. I just cruised around and visited and generally took a break from being in the office and beset by deadlines. Yes, I got some work done, but it was hanging-out-and-learning kind of work. … Read more

Spring: the time for fresh fleece

Yes, the birds are singing in the trees, which are covered with bright leaves, and flowers have begun to bloom abundantly. But there’s a subtler sign of spring in some lives: Ms. Little Bit doesn’t go outside any more. She actually hasn’t gone outside in quite a long time, which may be why she’s 21 … Read more

Those hands look awfully familiar . . .

Spinning cotton and cigar-box charkhas The new issue of Spin-Off (Summer 2008) arrived yesterday. It’s got a lot of good stuff in it. One of the especially good things is Carol Rhoades’ article on colored cottons. As I was reading it, I noticed a photograph with the caption, "A cigar-box charkha is a portable spinning … Read more