My friend gave me about 4 oz of grey English Angora fiber to spin that she had been saving from her rabbits. She doesn’t spin, but is an avid knitter, so she was looking forward to knitting with her own fiber.
I hackled the fiber to sort out all the short bits, neps, and hay, and was left with about 1.7 oz of prime fiber. She asked for pink in the batts, so I used 2 different shades of pink Tussah silk, and dyed some merino/silk blend top to layer in the batts.
I spun and 2-plied the batts into about 180 yards.Although I love the softness, I don’t care for Angora’s tendency to bloom and shed, so I spun the singles with a very high twist so that the loose ends have a harder time escaping the yarn.
Thanks for reading!
About 3 weeks ago Chloe had 4 adorable kits! Right now they are at the peak of baby cuteness.
This was an accidental litter of Chloe, (Black Tort) X Andre (Chocolate Tort). (Rabbits are very sneaky!) I think there are 2 males and 2 females, 3 Black Torts and possibly one Blue Tort.
I am excited to see how the possible Blue Tort develops… I’m tempted to keep her. She is the runt of the litter and is very highly shaded. She is the one farthest to the left in the picture above – you can see how she is shaded compared to her littermate.
This litter will be ready to go to new homes by October 25, but you can reserve one until they are old enough to leave their mother! Contact me, and we can work something out. The babies will be $25 each or $45 for two, with partial pedigree.
..to their new homes! I have 2 black and 2 agouti French Angora bunnies for sale, born 4/17/15. I updated my Rabbits For Sale page, so please check it out for more info. Thanks!
..With baby bunnies again! This litter of 5 is from Chloe (Black Tortoiseshell) x Basil (Chestnut Agouti). I am hoping for some new colors in this litter. (Last litter all the babies were Black Torts, same as their mom Chloe.) I’m not sure what color these guys are yet. I think 3 are all black and 2 are black with pink tummies and ears. They are only a few days old, so by the end of the week they should be old enough for me to take them out of the nest box and get a good look.
This litter was interesting because 3 were born on Friday afternoon, and 1 was born on Saturday morning, and another Saturday afternoon. All were healthy though, and Chloe seems to be fine. She was early- she wasn’t due until Sunday!
Here is Chloe- she looks pretty ragged because of all the fur she pulled for the nest.
I finished my first real yardage of Angora yarn! I made my first weaving project, a scarf. Here is the yarn- a lot of time and effort has gone into it!
I blended a 75% alpaca to 25% angora mix, from my French Angora buck, Andre. This yarn has taken most of the summer and fall of 2014 to prepare for – I custom made a hackle to blend the fiber on, harvested the fiber from Andre, I waited until the Rhinebeck festival to get the alpaca, I blended, spun, Navajo plied and steamed the yarn, warped the loom, and now I’m finally using it!
Here are pictures of the process.
Andre, the wool producer
My custom hackle- here I’m blending the alpaca and angora to spin.
Here is the finished yarn- Navajo plied, roughly 250 yards.
Then I steamed the yarn, warped the loom, and started weaving!
I finished the scarf with a technique called hemstitching, which ties off the ends of the woven piece and gathers the warp into groups of fringe.
And here is the finished scarf!
Thanks for reading!
The babies are going to be 3 weeks old tomorrow!
They’ve started hopping up on top of the nestbox.
Today I set the twist in some yarns, which means I soaked most of them in very hot water until the fibers plumped up, and then drained the water out and set them to dry.
For overspun yarns, instead of soaking it in hot water, I steam it for 20 minutes, and then weight it to dry. That helps to reduce the amount of kinkiness in the yarn.
Here’s my makeshift stretcher.
The bucket has sand in it to provide the weight.
The babies are fat and healthy! They have grown so much over the last 2 weeks.
The babies eyes opened a few days ago. I think the colors are 1 chocolate tort, and 2 black torts. The’re are getting cuter every day!
God bless! Rebekah.
This morning Chloe started pulling fur, and when I went back out to feed the bunnies 2 hours later, lo and behold, she had kindled!
I have literally been waiting for this litter (my first) for over a year, so I’m super excited. This is the 3rd breeding, the first two failed, which was disappointing.
When I went out to check on her there was a stillborn kit on top of the nest 😦 I thought that was all, but I has still happy that she had kindled. When I went back after taking care of the kit, I moved the fur around and I saw 2 live, healthy babies in the way back of the nest! After making myself wait for about 20 minutes I went back and took the nestbox out of the cage to take a good look. One more healthy baby was in the corner.
3 healthy babies!!!!!!
Look at those tiny ears!
Chloe, first time momma.
I will be posting photos as regularly as I can to show these little guys grow up!
Because…. I now have a spinning wheel!
It’s great. My first ever wheel is an Ashford Kiwi, a very nice beginners wheel. I love how fast it is! This afternoon I spun an entire bobbin full of yarn. That same amount of yarn would have taken me days to do on the drop spindle. We bought this wheel at half price at a tiny yarn shop the next town over, an excellent deal. While we were there we picked up a beautiful braid of Blue Faced Liecester fiber, which the lady at the shop recommended for a beginning spinner.
It’s a double treadle wheel, which I like because it feels more balanced than a single treadle. It’s also in the upright “castle” style I like.
I love this fiber, it’s a joy to spin.
I’m excited to try different styles of spinning and plying with this wheel, and later on if I want to spin bulky art yarn, Ashford makes a jumbo bobbin and flyer attachment.
I’m off to go spin yarn for hours and hours!! 🙂
God bless, Rebekah.
I’m doing a spinning contest, so I needed to take the yarn off my spindle so I could start spinning the new yarn, a cotton/angora blend.
There’s not very much yarn on the spindle to it’s a mini-skein.
I made myself a quick skeiner stick to wind the yarn on.
Now to make the angora yarn bloom, you are supposed to “full” the yarn (soak the yarn in several changes of very hot and cold water while mashing and agitating the yarn.)
I used a potato masher.
The next step is to whack the damp yarn on a hard surface to make the angora bloom. I did not take pictures of this step.
I didn’t really need to do this whole process for such a small skein, but I wanted to try it. It’s my first yarn from my own angora, after all!