Friday, September 2, 2011

Proper preparation is important and time saving

Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance!   I learned this phrase about 25 years ago when I was selling soap.  A good principle and had I followed it I mightn't be dealing with this...
those dark spots?  They're neps, little balls of tangled wool.  Not what you want in your batts of pretty Jacob fleece.  ugh
Looking at it from this angle without back-lighting you can see how they look on the surface of the batt.  Little blobs...dammit!  I will be picking them out of the fleece as I spin, which slows down the spinning.

If only I had done the following...

Lesson #1...lay your fleece out on a large surface with 1 1/2" to 2" holes all over and shake the daylights out of it.  This procedure gets lots of excess dirt and veggie matter out of the fleece prior to washing.  It will also get rid of lots of the dreaded second cuts.

A lesson learned.  It truly is worth the extra time and effort to get those short bits out of the fleece BEFORE you wash it, then pick it, then card it.  All of these make the neps more determined to stay in the fiber and make it impossible to make a super smooth batt.   Or pile-o-batts as the case is here.
On an experimental photo note, I've decided that I like the following photo without the flash best.  It seems more interesting to me.

Which one do you like better?
LittleDog says, Hey! have a fun and safe Labor Day Weekend! and be sure to shake out those second cuts.  And remember...Even a bad crafty day is a good day!

Hop on over to Wisdom Begins In Wonder to see lots of other fibery peeps.  Happy Fiber Arts Friday!

17 comments:

pinkundine said...

Oooh, that photo without flas is very cool, I prefer it to the other one... It looks more dramatic somehow

WonderWhyGal said...

oooh, thank you for the lesson as I begin to clean my Jacob fleece this weekend.

I like the first photo but you really only focus on the hat where the second photo lets you see the drumcarder.

Have a great weekend.

Alittlebitsheepish said...

I like the first photo, it has some ncie mystery to it, but I couldn't tell there was a drumcarder in the picture, that bit is too dark

Heather Woollove said...

I vote for the non-flash photo...if it's 'art' you're after! :)

Kathryn Ray said...

It depends on what you're going for.

I like the first photo, but It's more about the little lights, where the second photo you can see the hat and drum carder.

Thank you for the instructions on how to make neps... Because, sometimes we just might want neps. Right? ;-)

Kate (KnitsInClass) said...

I always need that reminder to do the hard work ahead of time - I frequently plow ahead and end up with more work to do at the end (which usually would have been easier to do at the beginning!)

AllyB said...

Under the hat that everyone noticed is the cowl I made with my own handspun. Perhaps I should turn this photo into an I Spy game? LOL Thanks for the comments.

BammerKT said...

About a week ago I finished spinning a jacob lamb fleece I processed. I had to pick our fricken neps too - buttloads of them. I learned my lesson then too!

Paula stark said...

First picture is art, the second is information. The dog is cutesy of all.

Paula stark said...

First picture is art, the second is information. The dog is cutesy of all.

Spinster Beth said...

You're right, it's like fishing ... even a bad day fishing/crafting is better than a good day at work!

Vivian said...

I like the puppy picture the best, but I assume that's not what you are asking ;-) I agree with others, the non-flash picture is more dramatic, but if you want to show the objects, you need the flash.

Have a great Labor Day weekend!

fiberdance said...

I like the 2nd pic that you can see everything in it better.
I have found that to get Jacob nice and smooth you have to comb the heck out of it and toss aside the neps (or use them to stuff or felt something.) Carding just doesn't seem to work. After combing its a dream to spin.

Voie de Vie said...

Sans flash, I agree. I bet Little Dog does too. :)

Fallingladies said...

Proper planning... a good lesson, with my watercolors I have to make myself wait to start painting, I usually want to dive right in after a quick sketch but I've learned I need to spend more time on the sketch before I start or I just can't fix the major problems in layout!

Keri said...

Thanks for the tips!! I recently purchased my first "real" fleece. (It still smells like the alpaca.) I will shake and air it on my balcony.

Bubblesknits said...

Definitely no flash. :) And I'm sooo going to be remembering that bit of alliteration for the kids one day. Might have to leave one of the p's out, but still...pretty awesome. lol