An update on the Icelandic fleece is in order, methinks! As you may recall, I acquired this fleece from a lovely lady who was de-stashing some fiber and goodies from her now shuttered sheep farm (sad, yes, but she has moved on to a new career and seems quite happy).
I began carding up this fluffy mass via my drum carder. My guild mate and the interwebs led me to believe this was possible even though Icelandic is a down breed with a dual coat. So I tried . . . first attempts failed because I was feeding the locks into the drum carder down-side first. Not so good: separation ensued. Then, I regrouped and tried feeding in the locks the opposite way: tog first (thel last) and voila! Icelandic batts!
The prep work is a bit tedious, mostly because you have to really open the locks by hand and tease them out a bit, sometimes even flick carding the tog end to relax it. So, I decided that 3 batts, or about 50g was enough for a test run on the wheel.
Spinning the batts was wonderful. Since I was going for a lopi yarn (single ply, combo of thel and tog) that would be very loosely spun, I divided the batts into quarters so that I would have to waste less time and hand movement trying to draft without accidentally overspinning. The results are quite good, I think, for first go at Icelandic single-ply yarn. I love the heathering and the hand of it. And so, I WILL go through the tedious process of fiber prep–Icelandic is totally worth it!
As for knitting: this is the first of my yarns that I really, really want to knit up! I’m thinking some fair isle with some of the purple and blue Lopi I bought a long time ago . . .