Saturday, August 4, 2012

Chiengora (Dog fiber yarn)

Freykja -German Shepherd

Brian works with another Brian (LOL we know about 6 of them) that has German Shepherds. FOUR Shepherds. So there's a goldmine of fiber in that connection.

His wife, Colbie, send my Brian home with a bag of combings and this is what they looked like.

 I was so excited till I spun up a sample and noticed:

It's full of guard hairs. (click for detail) Those straight pieces are what give wool it's prickle factor. My pug's coat is completely guard hair...that's why it's unspinable. There's no open cuticles to "grab" and it's so stiff that it won't bend into yarn. But the down of a Shepherd is marvelous. So I've got to figure out a way to get ALL that guard hair out of it. After some frustrated tweezing sessions, I wondered how it'd spin with the hairs in it. NOT WELL. It's so prickly that I think I'll knit this into a practice swatch and look for another way to separate the wool from the hair.

And last, but not least, this is Frekyja. Isn't she beautiful?


It's still hot here. It's so warm that even INSIDE the AC is having a hard time keeping up.

If you have any ideas about how to dehair fiber, let me know! LOL
Love, Ang


  1. You'll be so proud of me ... had dinner with some friends while we were in K-town last week and guess what I did? She brushed her 2 Shelties ... and ... and I asked for the brushings!

    I'm not sure what spindle to use yet. Last year, I tried using a support spindle that I have, but it's different than spinning with a wheel or top whorl spindle. I find that due to the shaft length, my hands are much higher than my elbows and I have to raise my elbows a bit. And this is spinning with the support spindle in a small bowl between my legs. It was really tiring. I think I'll use my wee Golding instead :)

    I wouldn't know about dehairing the guard hairs, since spinning chiengora would be a first for me. I found this link for you through someone on Spinning Daily, HTH:


  2. Just wondering ... do you use handcarders?