Yesterday I started carding up the alpaca fleece that was given to us. Thursday I sat outside and picked and cleaned the fleece. Then I washed it, rinsed it, and spread it to dry. It was quite relaxing to sit out in the sun and handle the fleece. But 11 pounds of fiber is a lot to handle, and the drum carder pictured is my cousin's. So it is rather hard to process this all myself. We will probably be sending it out to the mill we visited recently and getting it turned into roving. Makes everything SO much easier, and the prices are decent too.
The drum carder is a Fancy Kitty. Like I said, it is my cousin's, and I am not a 100% where she got it from. I do know that there is a group on ravelry for people who have Fancy Kitty's. Anyhow, it does work nicely, and I liked it a lot. Of course, this is the only drum carder that I have ever used, but still....
My first alpaca batt was 3.8oz. I was terribly shocked to feed a white & fawn fleece in to the carder and have a grayish batt come out. I almost fell over with shock. If I had not done the carding of this batt myself I might have been rather suspicious. But there you have it, a gray batt. It was a two year fleece so that may have something to do with it. I hear that it has something to do with the undertones. But I haven't looked into it very much, so can not speak with authority on the matter. However I intend to do some research, so stay posted. Let me say though, it was a SHOCK. It took me several hours to get over it the grayness.
And here are my first two batts! I did have some help with them, in fact the third batt was just pulled off the drum carder as I write! Several people had a hand in it, in fact, I barely did anything with the third batt.
Don't you LOVE these ribbons?! They are silk sari ribbons. I snagged a few of my cousin's ribbons for my photo shoot and she generously let me keep them! How wonderful is that?!
I took my pictures out in my Aunt's woods. There is a bench along the trail, at the halfway point. It is a great spot for photos. The woods were so pretty that I had to capture them for you all to see.
I started spinning the alpaca up last night. I am not totally happy with it, but I'm just going to spin it and see what happens. The owners of Jimmy (the alpaca) who kindly gave us this fiber will be the first recipients of my spinning. I am not sure what I am going to make for them yet, maybe some scarves, mitts etc. They have been warned about the shocking colour change. :)
Anyways, got to run. Adios!