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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Old Hippie Spins in the Grease

I bought a beautiful Romney fleece from Peeper Hollow Farm. I've bought a lot of fleeces from Peeper Hollow, all clean, all exactly as described, well-skirted, from coated sheep. This one is downright spectacular.

Not a speck of visible VM. No second cuts. Gorgeous crimp and luster. In fact, this was the Grand Champion at the Iowa State Fair! I decided that it was time for me to play Old Hippie and spin in the grease. It wasn't going to get any cleaner than this.

I watched an old episode of Miss Marple and flick-carded a big pile of locks. My hands got sticky. My carder got sticky. The locks were fluffy, and sticky.

The next day I sat down at the old Louet I just refinished. I wanted to use a period wheel for hippie spinning, and the Louet fit the bill. I also did NOT want to get my Majacrafts all...sticky.

I spun up 300 yds of bulky 2-ply. Wow. Sticky. What do people use this greasy yarn for? Waterproof mittens? You can see what this wool looks like scoured from the white (not sticky) sample in the photo. WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT STICKY YARN? PLEASE TELL ME.

It took a while to clean the orifice of the Louet, the hooks, the flyer, the bobbins, AND MY HANDS. No more hippie wool. No thanks.

I hope there is an old hippie out there who will buy this lovely, lanolin-rich, natural, yarn. I'm going to list it and cross my (sticky) fingers.


  1. Thank you for reminding me why I never went for that large ball of lanolin rich fiber on the shelf at Rhinebeck.

    The price might have been right, but the clean up would have been extensive and the memory would have been burned into my brain.

  2. I once added some lanolin to the final rinse of a Shetland fleece. It was wonderful to spin and smelled delightful; instant hand conditioner.

  3. I am doing similar to you. I have a beautiful Romney that I am just cold water cleaning and then spinning in the grease. But I am doing it on a drop spindle. Takes longer but is easily portable.

  4. hi,

    that looks great!! well.... i think that what they used to do with this, was spin in the grease, and then wash it or soak it for a couple of weeks so as you get rid of most of the lanolin, but leave some in..
    i used to only spin in the grease on my traditional, and it did get veeeeeery gunked up with grease. great fun to try though :)