I was surfing on Ravelry last week and got hooked on the Suint Soaking threads in the Fibre Prep Group.  I have used this method in the past but more through lack of time than conscious effort.  I like the idea of chemical free processing – I use hot water & Morning Fresh for most scouring followed by a soak in Wool Wash – and I have the space, plenty of rain water (it’s all we have here) and plenty of fleeces to process.  I pulled out a fleece, spread it on the trampoline and gave it a more thorough skirting.  I think I have finally learned to throw fleece away instead of trying to save every little bit – I have over 30 kg of the stuff and another 12 fleeces to come in a few weeks…..how much do I need really!?!

This first photo is the “outside” hence the brown from all the weathering, dust & sunlight – much of this will wash out and the bleached tips that remain will either be cut off or retained to give colour tone through out the yarn.


This is the side of the fleece that was closest to the sheep’s skin, it has beautiful colour variation through it from browns to grey to silver.  I will probably divide up the colours when the fleece is clean and dry and then bundle them up together.


Beautiful greys:


I put the fleeces into some buckets lying around and put the cold water on top:


In the black bag I had the remainder of the fleece but as the wool became wet I was able to fit more in and eventually I got the whole lot in:

At this point I left it to soak and topped up the water as required – I will have a look at it in the next few days – I am thinking it will take 7-10 days being the first fleece to go in and I put it in last Thursday.  When I take it out I will rinse it a few times, see how it feels (i.e. how greasy), probably soak it in wool wash (because I like the way the wool smells after it :)), spin it in the front loader and then dry it.  I am thinking I might flick and card up this fleece and sell it as batts on Etsy – my drumcarder seems to make quite nice 22-25g batts …. time permitting!