Monday, January 2, 2012

Carding a Gray Katmoget

The fleece pictured below came from of the lambs I sent to the processor in October.  It is a 6 month old lamb fleece...with a 1.5-2.5 inch staple.  Deliciously fine and very crimpy.

I decided to card the darkest locks up first.  Sextant was a dark katmoget...all his underbelly black had been skirted away.  The only true "black" locks in these batts came from the bit of stripe under his neck.  The rest of the dark came from his regular fleece.  Below are the batts after the first run through the drum carder. 

For the second pass through the carder I divided each batt into 2 or 3 sections and carded them separately.  The lighting for this photo is completely different...but you can still see there is a very distinct gradient.  I love how much variety a black katmoget fleece can give.  And I especially love the blue color!
I am dissatisfied with all the noils in these lamb fleeces I've been carding up recently.  The lambs were coated, and the very tippy-tip of the locks seems to be the source of the noils.  I don't expect it to matter much since this wool is intended for felting.  But if the locks had been longer and intended for spinning, I believe combing each lock would have been a better way to process the fleece.


Theresa said...

LOVE grey kat fleeces! You can felt a wonderfully soft scarf from part of this, with gradients from one end to the other.

For carding, yes the noils can be a pain, but just a quick flick of the tips before putting them on the carder solves it for me.

Love the birds!

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Thank you so much for the tip, Theresa! (sorry about the pun)

Laura said...

If the fleece has any grease left, it is much more likely to pill. If when you rub it between you fingers your fingers look shiny-it is still greasy. Another way is if it smells like a sheep still, but that is not always fool proof as I have had clean smelling wool still be tacky.

If a fleece has a wool break it will pill as well. You can check for that by holding a lock in your hands and giving a quick tug, if it breaks or tears it has a break. Two of my lamb fleeces had breaks this fall, One was not obvious at all and the only way I found out was by doing the test.

What a fun colored fleece-I love that color! If should felt up nicely!

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...


Thank you for this info! This fleece had been lightly washed so it was still somewhat greasy. I don't think it had a break, though. I did test several locks along the way. But I didn't know about the grease causing pills.

Kim Nikolai said...

Another thing you can do to avoid the noils I learned is to make sure the fleece is thoroughly clean. The finer fleeces really need this. I do an extra wash/soak with extra hot water.

Wonderful colors!!