View Full Version : Okayayie.

07-24-2008, 10:09 AM
I need some help. :) First - the llama wool (is it called wool?) is raw . Extremely raw. I've been muddling my way through it, but not very well. I took a small handful (I have over 4 pounds of fiber in a giant trashbag.) and was experimenting. Is there a certain way to clean it/wash it?

Now here is where is gets funny. I don't have carders. Or any semblance of a set. What I do have.... is this dog brush, but only one. http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2751486 I have been trying to some how *sorta* card it.... but........ :roflhard: I'm sure you can imagine. LOL
Obvisouly, carders are going to work better. But the problem is, I am way broke. Can you make carders? If so, can some one give me some insight on this?

Last q (I promise): What is the best way to dye llama fiber? I want to try to dye it with kool aid due to the financial straights I am in at the moment....... But is that going to work? What works best? In the Kool Aid tutorial, it says to boil the fiber or yarn. Isn't that going to make it felt?

Sorry for all the questions. Thanks for any help any one can give me!!

BTW, the fiber I washed and cleaned is GORGEOUS!!! :woot: :woohoo: :yay: My siblings have the same problem I do....... YB was watching, and was like, oh! That's pretty yarn!" "Well, um, it's actauly still fiber bro. It's not yarn yet." LOL

07-25-2008, 02:17 AM
hello there

i haven't yet worked with llama yet but i think it's pretty close to alpaca .. i washed some alpaca the same way as i did wool, just much less detergent

the carding.. it's probably easier to buy carders than to make them..that's part of why they are expensive..from what i understand the cloth is hard to make.

sometimes you can find decent sets on ebay for an okay price.

the dog brushes can work.. 2 is def better than one..heh

also once the fiber is dry you can sort of fluff it apart and spin it like that.

koolaid will work for dyeing..just make sure to use some vinegar..the cirtic acid in koolaid i find is not enough to stay by itself

and you surely don't want to boil the fiber! a very light simmer is fine.

you really have to experiment to find what works best for you..
i hope that helps and wasn't too confusing! :teehee:

07-25-2008, 08:37 AM
Llama fiber is called 'fiber' - wool comes from sheep. All wool is fiber, but not all fiber is wool.

Yes, you can make your own carders, but the price of carding cloth is expensive and you have to order a large sheet of in quantity. you can buy carders on ebay, but be careful. You don't want to pay for a set of old carders with loose, rusty cloth.

Since llama doesn't have lanolin to contend with, you can wash it in warm soapy water - no agitation - to remove the dust. Let it dry. You can use your one dog slicker and flick the fiber staples across it. Do a number of these and spin them. Or you can spin straight from the lock without flicking. Each of these fiber preparations will give you two types of finished yarn.

For dyeing, you may want to producet the yarn first, then dye the yarn for your first time.
Foxyie is right, you don't want to boil the fiber

07-25-2008, 10:56 AM
Thank you both for the info!

We are going into town in a little while, and if I can dig out enough change, I'll be buying some packs of koolaid! (The vinager shouldn't be a problem........ We use more vin. in our food/food prep than ANY family I know of...... And we have quite a bit on hand due to that.)

I found what you were talking about with the one dog brush on..... I think it was Joy of Handspinning. I understand what you mean now.

Thank you again! It's great to know that I have a place to come ask older and wiser spinners!!