I've been resting today, trying to fight off a cold (which I think I have succeeded in doing, yay!), but I did manage to card the wool for my Knitting Olympics project.
Here is the BFL (pink) and nylon (orange) that I started with:
It's 4 ounces of wool and 1 ounce of nylon. I dyed the fibers a couple days ago.
The first thing I did was to divide both fibers into 16 separate but equal pieces:
See the striped toes on the left? Nora had to help.
Then I divided each 1/16th of wool and 1/16th of nylon into quarters:
My pieces are getting itty bitty.
Each 1/16th got attenuated and layered:
I think the secret to successful carding is to make the wool wispy, very very very wispy, and to turn the drum s-l-o-w-l-y...
You have to build the fiber up, a quarter of a sixteenth at a time.... and then you have to take it off the carder and card it again, a quarter at a time. I could have carded it a couple more times but I wanted to keep the orange nylon a little bit visible, not entirely blended in.
Then I had a lovely teeny batt of fiber:
So pretty. Here's a close-up:
Then I rolled it up like a little sausage, and it is ready to spin:
Lather, rinse, repeat, and after fifteen more times, here is my wool for my Olympic Knitting event:
It was all I could do not to start spinning them immediately, but I refrained. I really really really want to spin them now. Even though they do look like pink insulation.
Oh, and at the store? Yesterday I met Jim from Good Karma Farm in Belfast, Maine, who stopped by to show me some of his yarn. I bought all he had on him, about 23 skeins, and he promises to make more soon. I love that Good Karma Farm uses fiber from local animals, spins the yarn on their own farm, and dyes it there too. This yarn is 60% Secret Island Sheep fiber and 40% Good Karma alpaca fiber from their own farm. And yes, the sheep are on one of the Maine islands, and it is a secret where. So just knit, and never mind :)
Here is what I got:
I wish you could feel how yummy this feels. I would say it is between a worsted and a bulky weight, a chunky weight along the lines of Classic Elite's Montera. I have not yet swatched with it to find out. Each skein has 200 yards and retails for $16.00.
I plucked out two skeins to use for a modular knit scarf I am thinking of designing for my Modular Knitting class later this spring:
I can't wait to start knitting with this stuff :)