I have a large bag of Corriedale that is ready for carding. It's about a half a fleece, plenty to do something significant, handspun. My not being able to knit opened the day up to pull out my drum carder and see what I could do.
I have had the carder for almost 2 years. I bought it from a fellow Raveller just before I moved from the west side. It lived in my car for months sheltered in a box. As soon as it could, it went to a safe place in the garage here and then, finally to a lovely cart to sit on and to work from. It has its own very proper spot in my study. I meant to give it a whirl sometime this winter, and still it sat. Carding seems like such a huge step. It intimidated me a bit. I mean, it might...What? It might what? I have told myself that the worst it could do was need to be tossed, and I could then work with the other two big chunks of fleece I have. I have been meaning to give the carding a serious go for months and I made time yesterday.
Before I started, I wanted to take a good picture of what it was in the before.
The fibre has a lovely crimp, right through the whole of it. I watched a few videos to bolster me. I particularly liked the video I linked to, because the shot shows the fibre going into the carder and he does it without any fanfare at all. Such an unhurried take on carding, a simple put it in, like this and a way you go, approach. And I did.
And off the carder. Pretty great isn't it?
And a side shot. It's the most impressive light airy pile of fibre. I did that. Well, the carder did that, but I was there.
I ran these first batts through twice more just to make sure that the fibre was nicely even and that all of it was equally airy. Next time I will run some through a third time, just to see if there is a difference in how light and airy these batts can be.
I stopped after this point. I don't have any place to put a huge number of fluffy batts right now and I think I would rather card as I spin. So three is enough to be going on with.
I would spin it all right now, but all my bobbins are filled. The spares I had, are full of the Big Ball singles. I did do some spinning yesterday and I am now back to the last couple feet of blue roving. It would be so nice to get this done. The plan is to N ply them, to maintain the lovely bright colours.
I would dearly love to knit today, but as I did the last batt of fibre, I realized my thumb hurts. It is a bit better this morning, but I am only going to do easy light things with my hands today. So spinning or plying day.
The other thing I am going to do today, is pay attention to my loom. That too has been sitting there waiting. I have dish towels that need some doing and it is past time to start.
At the start of the winter, I set myself a goal of carding some before winter's end. When I was working in the spare room back in January, the Corriedale stayed out to be worked on. And it has begun. I may have left it to the bitter end of winter, but I did meet my goal to begin. Well past time to start but it is a start.