I can not even tell you how excited I am to have received this Polypay lamb fleece from a friend that I visit with every month. She and her husband have a farm where they raise corn and sheep (Polypay and Suffolk) the sheep are raised for meat rather than fiber. I asked her a couple of years ago if when they sheared if I could buy a lamb fleece from her. Not much more was said. When I went to Church this morning she had a tub with a Polypay lamb fleece in it and said she told her shearer to keep back a fleece for her friend and what it was for and he even skirted it. The shearer told her he would do the Polypay for spinning because it was a softer fleece. I am very grateful because the shearer takes the fleeces for his time and skill to shear her flock, since my friend and her husband don’t sell the fleece but they have to have the sheep sheared, it saves them the money of having to pay someone to shear for them so their Ewes can lamb and then again when they go to market. I am sooooo excited!!!!
I couldn’t keep my hands off of it after I got home. I had to take a small sample and bring inside to play with. I live in a small apt so I left the fleece in my trunk until I can either bring it in and scour it (when it’s warmer as it will need to dry outside) or find a small mill that will take a 2 lb fleece to make into roving. I have never started with a fresh fleece or carded my own before, the lamb is not quite a year old and the fiber is about 2 1/2 inches long. It has a bit of lanolin in it, which looks dirty but is quite soft. The lambs fleece is soft and I have a before and after picture above of the small sample I brought inside. When I put it in the hot soapy water to get the lanolin out (which it did rather quickly), I put my hand in the hot water to push it under and the second time I couldn’t see the small fiber in there and thought, oh my gosh what happened? It cleaned quickly and is so white I couldn’t see it against the bottom of the bathroom sink. Also it is as soft as a cloud in the water so I could hardly feel it in there. I was trying to be VERY careful so I didn’t felt it. You can see the crimpiness in the before picture and tho’ you can’t see the crimpiness in the after picture, as I play with it I can feel the elasticity in it. I will make her a scarf with some of it. Life is good :). I proimse to get a picture of the whole fleece sometime next week. 🙂
We also had more snow since the last picture I posted, about the same amount and then again on Friday, but not a lot. This next week is suppose to be a bit warmer than this last week and I’m excited about that because I am semi retiring. My last day at work is Tuesday 1/31. The rest of the week will be spent (after sleeping in :P), deep cleaning my apt, you know shampooing carpets etc. I know it’s not spring yet, but I still have the “spring is in the air” feeling :). A friend asked me what I would do with my time and all I could see was pictures of me at the spinning wheel and behind some knitting needles clacking along :). I do intend to spend some time doing Genealogy now that I will have some time to do that, I have a feeling that will be my new addiction. 😛