Got this fleece sent to me by May, a friend of my mom’s. (May, like Stalkermom, is blogless, although both of them would likely prefer the term “blog-free”)

I’ve been spinning the blanket-stuffing fleece into the aran yarn for Sean, and while it’s definitely in the scratchy-wool category, that is a legitimate category, and now that I’ve got the hang of working with it, it’s fine. See, I have some sweater to prove it.

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I’ve also been spinning the fleeces Ron (that’s my father-in-law) acquired for me – making sock yarn for him, (just in time for Soctoberfest?), and it’s going along well – especially since I am stubbornly using the “not best” bits first. By the time I make I-don’t-know-what out of the GOOD bits, it’ll be a real treat.

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But then, this fleece from May. Oh. My.

I don’t know what it is, I wouldn’t know one sheep from another if they jumped up and kissed me on the nose. (I know from the other day that this is literally true.) This fleece is white. It is shiny. It is curly and soft. It has a staple half as long as my arm. (Well, y’know. I am short.) And actually, it is not white, it was white, because it hadn’t been in my house 12 hours before I had it in the dye pots.

See, I’ve been wanting to dye something amethyst. I’ve been planning and thinking about it for a while now, and I had actually intended to do that to the “good bits” when I had enough of them combed out. You know how amethyst has the purple swaths, but then if you really look you can see the blue and red and white layers coming through that make the purple bits happen? And there are shadings in the purple? Yeah, yeah, you know what a rock looks like. OK. So that’s what I wanted to do. And then, when this fleece turned up, all plans were disarranged, because it would be perfect for this dye job.

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I dyed it right there and then in the locks, because I am just that impatient. Actually, I swear, that was part of the plan. The adjusted plan, that is. Because of the shiny and curliness.

No, really, I mean it! Because now, when it’s combed out, it looks like this:

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It’s making my fingers tingle. I can’t wait to spin this stuff.

That is, incidentally, “ice blue” and grape kool-aid. The purples were done all in the same pot – first I used about six packages of grape, cooked it for a while*, took out half the wool and then added another package of grape and one of blue to what was left. The blue is, fairly obviously, just blue. I used not quite enough water to cover, which left some bits white and some less dyed than others.

*There are only four clocks in my house, one of them is broken, two of them are wrong, and the fourth one is on my computer up in the studio. I never know what time it is, and I don’t know how long anything takes, unless it takes enough time to require a calendar. Dyers I trust say things like “microwave for four minutes” or “heat at 200˚ for twenty minutes”, so if it makes you feel better, when I say “put on the stove and don’t let it boil while you clean out the catboxes”, you can just pretend I said one of those other things instead.

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