Hand Carders arrived!

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So, about a month back I had the opportunity to buy a couple of alpaca fleeces from Welsh Valley Alpacas. I started out spinning from the fleece raw but decided that both the experience and the end product would be better if it was carded first – so off I went, and today my hand carders arrived!

After some trial and error I am carding the fleece, but needless to say there’s lots of room for improvement. Even with that in mind though, between practicing spinning raw fleece and actually carding it, I can already tell that the yarn I’m spinning is a lot smoother and more consistent. It’s also quite fine, so I think I’ll be trying to ply it once I’ve done a couple of spindles-full.

The other part of the order was 4 different combed tops – Manx Loaghtan, Black Welsh Top, Norwegian White and White Blue Faced Leicester. One I’ve got the next lot of alpaca done I’m looking forward to trying them all out and seeing how they compare – both in the act of spinning and the finished product.

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2 thoughts on “Hand Carders arrived!

  1. Hello there! I’ve been spinning for just over a year now, and love finding new fibres and getting better at spinning familiar ones. I have some raw alpaca fleece too – the reason for this message is to suggest you might also try combing, rather than carding it. I tried carding at first, but wasn’t happy with the result. Then I fished out the metal comb we used occasionally for our older cat, and used it to comb the alpaca locks: I held each lock at the cut end, and found that combing it a couple of times fluffed it right out. I dropped it in a bowl, and continued till the bowl was full. I then spun straight from a handful of the resulting fluff. After plying and washing, I absolutely love the result! You may find carding works for you, but if not, then do have a go at combing (you can get a comb cheaply from most pet shops). Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi! Thanks for the comment – I hadn’t thought of trying a pet comb! I’m finding carding is working pretty well at the moment, but I’m always keen to experiment, and it’s not exactly going to break the bank to find out what it’s like and how it changes the yarn. Thanks for the tip! I think one of the things I’m finding so fascinating about spinning is that quite small changes can produce quite different results.

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