I am a sucker for lamb's fleece. Of course it is almost always soft, but there is something else about it, something that evokes the "awwww" factor in me. This fleece was no exception.
This lovely sample is from a Shetland lamb named Peeps. It is the last of the original Shetland fleece samples from Cathy. The staples in this pic are from the washed batch. Before washing, the fleece actually looked fawn in color. My, but how could a little lamb get so dirty. I can envision a very playful little fellow.
This fleece was dual coated. The length varied from three to five inches. The crimp was anywhere from three to seven per inch, depending on what part of the sample I measured. Some of the tips had sweet little curls on them (not really pictured here.) Despite all the dirt, there was very little vegetable matter (VM) in it. I lost nine-tenths of an ounce of weight in washing out the lanolin and dirt, but was delighted in the lovely color and luster.
I experimented a bit with the size for the singles, before figuring out that about 30 wraps per inch gave me a 2-ply the size I was aiming for. I used my Kromski Minstrel (which seems to be the wheel I always reach for, even though I have an Ashford Traditional too), and the 8.5:1 spinning ratio.
The results were over 103 yards of lovely soft, 16 WPI 2-ply.
It has a lovely hand and luster. It is moderately elastic. Compared to the other two white Shetland samples, Peeps is more of an oyster or pearl color. I know that's not a Shetland sheepy term, but if you take a careful look at the three yarns below, you can see three different whites!
The colors above are fairly accurate and the difference is subtle. You may remember that Aurora was the one with the canary stain, and Angie was the white lamb. Peeps is more of an off-white, perhaps having a hint of the palest fawn? I'm not sure! It has been interesting however, to compare them.
What's next? I'm going to start working on the next batch of Shetland fleece samples, also from Cathy. More on those soon.