I did a little more combing yesterday, this time to try out blending. I used the wool I dyed last December when I was getting ready to overdye my Urchin Shawl. It's Rambouillet x Cormo, part of a whole raw fleece I bought a couple years ago and scoured myself. I have a pillowcase full of dyed locks, in four colors.
I used about half purple, and half red/pink/blue in equal amounts. When I first put it on the comb, it looked like no good could come from this venture. Clown wig, anyone?
After the first pass, there's some progress, but not much.
After the second pass, though, things are starting to come together.
And after the third pass, all is well with the world.
The staple length of this wool is shorter than the Merino x Columbia in the last post, and there was more combing waste. Some was due to the fact that this isn't as high-quality a fleece as Herkel, some was due to my scouring and dyeing process. I washed this in Friday Harbor, where we had very hard water. It was difficult getting all the grease out and it matted a bit, and I'm sure the kettle-dyeing didn't help. Still, the finished product is lovely springy top that I can't wait to spin.
The colors mixed nicely, but I think next time I'll use proportionally less purple and more of the other colors, though it is noticeably different from the straight up purple locks. It's more dynamic and has depth. It'll be interesing to see what it looks like spun.
I also combed one batch of some suri alpaca locks that Caroline sent me with the Falkland top as the prize from her 500th comment contest. Not the easiest thing to comb because it was so slippery and staticky, but it made beautiful top. Actually, I forgot to take pictures and went straight to my wheel with it. It was very much like spinning silk. I'll have to show that another time.