Sheared Bliss


Baa, baa, black sheep
May 9, 2009, 11:27 pm
Filed under: Fiber Arts, History, Museum | Tags: , , , ,

Have you any wool?  Yes sir, yes sir, two bags full.  But I’ll get to that in a bit.

Today was Sheep to Shawl at The Museum – an entire day full of wooly goodness.

I spent the day in the 1860s summer kitchen helping to man the Weighty Wool Contest (“Guess the weight of the fleece – win a prize!”) and skirt fleeces. 

Here’s everyone patiently waiting their turn to get shorn:

The new spring lambs were a little confused about the whole thing:

Step 1: Grab a sheep and shove

Step 2: Flip it over and fire up your shears

Step 3: Gather up the wooly goodness

Step 4: Pick out all the dingleberries (yes, technical term).

Step 5: Now you’re ready to pick and tease it, wash it, dry it, card it, spin it, etc., etc.  Or, you know, stuff it in a sack and deal with it later.

Don’t forget to admire everyone’s new summer ‘do.  Lookin’ sharp, guys!

All in all a great day full of good wool and good friends.  Here’s Nurse K and me sittin’ on our favorite stump.

You can tell she’s a good friend because she humored my crazy whims by helping me pick every dandelion in the entire museum between skirting fleeces and even took pictures of me doing it.

I came home with three sandwich bags stuffed full of dandelions.  I foresee some yellow yarn in my future.  Speaking of loot, I also came home with these:

Yup, two whole fleeces – one white merino, one dark brown navajo churro.  Skirted, but otherwise completely raw.  Right, because I totally have time to process two entire fleeces.  Anyone know how long you can let a fleece sit in a garbage bag without any detrimental effects?

Shrub would like to add that, even though she’s never met a sheep, she thinks that they smell quite fascinating.

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6 Comments so far
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If you salt a deer skin you can keep it for about a year. I’d say keep the fleece until Shrub doesn’t think it smells pretty anymore.

Comment by sarahstephens

Haha, should I salt them?

Comment by shearedbliss

I don’t know much about fibers, but I you will have your work cut out for you. I think I can get you more dandelions. 🙂

Comment by bethweeden

Yay dandelions! There’s tons in the grass around work, but I decided my coworkers think I’m crazy enough and I probably shouldn’t spend my lunch break picking weeds.

Comment by shearedbliss

If you just cannot manage all that Merino, I will be happy to take some off your hands…….! I will even wash it myself! 😉

Comment by Liz

Haha, I’ll be sure to offer it to you before I throw it out in a fit of frustration. My mom offered to help me process it when she comes to visit in a few weeks. She’s never processed a fleece before. She’s not a spinner or a knitter. She thinks it will be “fun.” Hi, Mom! Ignore that last bit, it will totally be fun!

Comment by shearedbliss




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