|Baseball jersey, from "Knits Men Want". Which, incredibly, they do!|
It was a hard choice, since he has requested 90% of the sweaters in Knits Men Want, but I made him pick ONE. Step 2 was to select which fleeces would make the cut, so he chose a Romney/Rambouillet cross that I bought at Rhinebeck in 2009:
|Meghan has the "twin" of this fleece. (The shot is a little dark, apologies.)|
Gorgeous, right? I love how silvery it is. The fleece had AMAZING crimp, and was a joy to spin. My qualms are with how Zeilinger's processed it, leaving enough grease on it to make it smell rancid until I washed it again, myself. They also charged me extra weight (ahem, thumb on the scale, much?) on all three of the fleeces that they processed for me, and didn't bother to label which fleece was which, or how much finished weight I ended up with. I can't recommend them, sorry, Zeilinger's.
The "up" side of re-washing it is that I can enthusiastically recommend the unscented SOAK for getting nasty, stinky, rancid lanolin out of wool without stripping it completely dry. Way to go, SOAK!
(BONUS! According to their website, SOAK is biodegradable and non-toxic, so I take my grey water and pour it in my compost. The earthworms say it's like a spa treatment, but to be fair, they're earthworms, so take their recommendation with a grain of salt. Or a spoonful of compost.)
Andrew wanted a darker color for the sleeves/collar, and I may have guided him toward this beauty:
This is a Merino/Border Leicester cross that I picked up from Black Sheep Gathering in 2010, and the incomparable Shari from Morro Fleece Works worked her magic on it:
I wish I had gotten a picture of the fleece pre-processing, it had the most INCREDIBLE stark white skunk streak running through it. (I have an auntie who went grey the same way, and every time I see a streak that defined, I think of her hair.) You can see it in the picture above, with the locks I pulled from the fleece.
Blended and pindrafted, I love how it creates a heathered effect in the singles. I would love this fleece in a box with a fox, in a house with a mouse, or in this case, in a sweater for cooler weather.
The swatches have actually been done for almost a month, and Andrew asked what the hold-up was. The singles have been sitting on the coffee table for *approximately* the same length of time, being gorgeous and single. You know how they are, smug little things.
I told him that I couldn't ply the sweater until I took pictures of the singles for Ravelry. (Along with being gorgeous, single, and smug, they are also vain.) With the clock ticking down (with 127 days left in the year, about 1/3 for you lovers of fractions), I figured I should stop making excuses and actually see if I can finish in time.
Let the countdown begin.