Sheep’s wool is easy to come by on Salt Spring : qiviut (musk ox fibre) and cashmere (the soft undercoat from goats) less so. Very few spinners have the opportunity to try these very expensive and exotic fibres, and without specific instruction on how to spin them they might waste valuable product. Not any more. On the morning of November 30th Mary Padden and Cheryl Huseby gave a talk to Guild members, and in the afternoon taught the secrets of handling these very short fibres to five spinners at Sandra Hodgins’ studio. Small quantities of both fibres were supplied to participants for a modest fee
Harvesting these fibres is very labour intensive. To get all of one year’s growth it’s necessary to comb the fibre out of the fleece, at the time of year when it is naturally released, but has not yet fallen out and been lost. Musk oxen in captivity in Alaska have become accustomed to human contact, and some, like 16 year old Scarlett, even submit to combing without protest.
To inquire about repeats of this workshop write to Contact Us.