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Topic: Icelandic Wool...Can it be softer?  (Read 860 times)
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« on: April 11, 2006 03:51:20 PM »

Hi Everyone,

I was giving a few Icelandic fleeces. I had them processed through a local fiber mill. Now I have 9 pounds of the roving (very crimpy). When I spin with it, it makes a very rough yarn. It's nothing I would want to knit a scarf out of. I definetly wouldn't want it against my skin.

The question:

Is there any way to soften the yarn? Maybe some kind of soaking process or heat bath?

Any help would be appreciated. Thank You!

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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2006 04:11:22 PM »

Wow... um..Icelandic fleeces are double coated, the tog is rough and the thel is super super soft. Prior to carding you can pull or comb the two apart, use the tog for coats and floor rugs and the thel for next to the skin stuff (its comperable to cashmere in softness) I personally enjoy spinning one or the other seperately, but not together.

Frankly I'm sort of stunned that no one at the fiber mill suggested separating the two. It could be that they didn't notice or identify the fleece or they've never worked with it before and didn't know.

My suggestion is to spin it up, embrace the quality of it for something like a heavy outer sweater or coat and love it as is.

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society." Mark Twain
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2006 06:39:33 PM »

maybe you could market it as a textile or weaving yarn?  that stinks if you had other plans for it!

« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2006 05:15:18 PM »

Icelandic wool is lovely and wearable if you embrace it for what it is, like cromegrrl said.

I've done some felting with Icelandic wool and it felts quite nicely. The fibre has a great character, and is so beautiful. Felted or knitted slippers are a perfect use for Icelandic, as it is tough and long-wearing.

I've plied an Icelandic singles with a silk singles, then doubled it with a soft yarn in mittens. The Icelandic wears great, the silk gives it a lovely drape, and the soft yarn makes it a more reasonable next-to-skin clothing article.  The kempy stuff will never feel like Merino, though.

Also, you could just line any hat or scarf you make with a fine polar fleece.

The kempy fibre has a great character, but you do have to work around it if you want any clothing. You could also use it for textiles or rugs if you want, too. Good luck!
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2006 02:30:12 PM »

The Icelandic I spun (bought in roving from) feels soft to the hand but when I were the sweater vest I can feel it through my shirts. (but i am Irish and have great tolerance to the wools itch bothering me enough to take it off) It is normally used in outerwere or rugs. Its rather nice to spin, and it looks nice when plied with a longwool with luster like mohair or Border lester. Lopi yarn is make from Icelandic and I have heard that it softens with wear and washings.

http://peachymanaangel.livejournal.com/ for blog fun
http://www.flickr.com/photos/kylacrawford/ pictures. When words only get in the way
http://kylaslab.etsy.com Shop for fun felted jewelry and other fiber arts
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