Wool for Sheep

In my last post I talked about getting some felted body parts ready for making sheep pins. http://wp.me/p1WEqk-1o2  The other thing the sheep need so they will not be naked is wool.

First I had to pick curls out of a Blue Faced Leicester Sheep fleece I have. After having done this you appreciate why buying prepared curls costs so much. It takes for ever to pull the little curls out.  This is something you do chatting with friends or watching TV.

curls fleece

The next part is more fun. My sheep like to have colourful fleeces so they must have their wool dyed pretty colours. I soak the wool while I am picking out dye colours. They take up dye more evenly that way.  Sometimes I do not soak them so they dye unevenly. You get some interesting results that way. Usually they end up 2 tone. I use acid dyes.

curls soaking

I dye the curls in small batches in some small plastic containers I got at the dollar store.

dye in bowl dye in bowl 2

I add the premixed dye and then some extra water to just cover the wool. Then into the microwave for a minuet or two. When it comes out I transfer the wool and dye to a zip lock baggy to sit until it is cool.

dye in bag

I do it this way because when I have tried putting a zip lock bag in the microwave sometimes it get too hot in just one spot and a hole melts in the bag. This way is a little more work but no holes in the bags.

I also over dyed some locks I had done earlier. I think they were done with onion skins. They where a horrible yellow shade I wouldn’t use for anything. The don’t look to bad in the picture but in person, yuck.

curls soaking yellow

I decided on brown and black. I already had lots of green and some orange. They both came out brown. I could do the black again to make it go black but the brown is a nice shade so I will leave it. They are the two at the bottom of the picture. Sorry about the quality of the picture but it was too windy to go outside for a picture.

dyed curls done

Now all I have to do is put all the parts and the curls together.



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10 Responses to Wool for Sheep

  1. ruthlane says:

    Lovely locks!

  2. Well the dying part seems pretty simple. I have dyed fabric in the ziploc bags, but had not put them in the microwave. The wool is really beautiful when it is dyed such lovely colors.

    • Its not hard Judy. Acid dyes need heat to work. If you have fiber reactive dyes you can use them as acid dye by using vinegar and heating them.

  3. Marilyn Nelson says:

    I love the colors! I have steamed wool with acid dyes but haven’t tried the microwave. Do you dedicate the oven to your dyeing? I have some locks to dye. I may try this method. Thanks for sharing. I can’t wait to see the sheep!

  4. craftymadre says:

    What great colors! Thanks for the tutorial.

  5. zedster66 says:

    The colours and locks are gorgeous, Ann 🙂
    I bet they’ll look great on the sheep.

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