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Smelly, Colour and Knitting

What strange unpredictable weather May has brought us.  A little of every season all jumbled up and selected at random.  Regardless, the shearing has started and the sheep are free of their heavy load.  The fleece are being picked over and sorted.  I have a bubbly feeling!  I adore this sorting and selecting and skirting.  Probably i should get out more, but hey ho!  At least I am happy!

I have started THE solution today with 2 of the most gorgeous soft Shetland fleeces ever!  I need the solution is deal with these in a gentle manner, so I start with the finest fleeces.  The solution gets fierce as the summer goes on and often i will have to dilute it if the fleece is fine.  It needs diluting or the fierceness of the mixture can literally eat the fleece.  So here is the start of this years cleaning.  It felt good!



The large blue barrels are employed again! 

Does it say something very large about me that I find this exciting?  Just a thought!!!……..

Moving on……. to the weather?  Like the weather I am trying little bits of lots of things in no apparent order.  Inspiration is coming thick and fast and I have started lots of ideas and patterns.



The barn is full of colour, just like the hedgerows


And the Clematis is stunning and covering the back of the cottage completely!






About jillybeanyarns

Artist, maker, creative mess-maker. Expert in complications and chaos. #livingwithcancer

6 responses »

  1. Beauteous colours! but what is the ‘solution’? It’s OK if you can’t ‘tell’……………

    • Just water! The water then starts to ferment with the lanolin in it and smells DREADFUL! You must keep an eye on it as it gets very fierce when it gets stronger. But it means no chemicals touch the fleece!

      • That is fantastic! Did you hear me laugh????? Crickey, are you that warm over there already? It was 3C here this AM! Supposed to get progressively warmer til we get to 25 C by Friday, then of course we get rain 🙂 Thank you very much. I and most of my friends use Dawn, a dishwashing liquid that has enzymes and biodegradable surfactants. I will definitely try this. Very exciting.Susan Date: Mon, 12 May 2014 19:06:07 +0000 To:

      • Sent the solution on to a friend and she said some people swear BY it and some swear AT it…………..

        Date: Mon, 12 May 2014 19:06:07 +0000 To:

  2. We are not on main drainage here so I have to be very careful what goes back into the land. Thats one reason why I do it. The other reason is that is you get it right (and I have learnt the hard way) the quality of the resulting fleece is superb. I think if you treat it like you would your hair (gently) the results are better. Having said that I would not ferment my hair!!!! (Just for the record!)

    • Good for you taking care of the land in that way. I have a septic tank and it seem to eat everything I throw down it 🙂 Lanolin and dirt. Recently I have begun soaking the fleece in water first to get most of the dirt etc out and then wash it. I can then use that first soaking water for plants. Hope my gooseberry bush and the rhubarb like sheep doo-doo 🙂 Take care and happy fermenting…NOT your hair!!susan

      Date: Tue, 13 May 2014 08:06:56 +0000 To:


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