Saturday, April 23, 2011

Going cold sheep: No More Fleece-Extreme DeStash pledge

This little "Holstein" lamb growing up at Elihu Farm in Valley Falls, NY will probably produce a gorgeous fleece next spring.  Will I be able to resist?

Taking the "No More Fleece: Extreme De-Stash Pledge" is not going to be easy.  I love fleece! There is nothing more beautiful than a farm-fresh fleece, glowing in the sun streaming into the fiber fair shed or barn or wherever I have been stopped in my tracks by the sight of its loveliness.  I've been drawn to a particular fleece from across a fiber-packed fleece sale shed, such as the one at Rhinebeck, as if the fiber cried out to me to be spun.  I've even remembered fleeces I've passed up because I have so much, wondering over the years how they spun up for whoever the lucky purchaser was.

Which could explain the two closets packed with fleece and the work table in my workshop taking the "overflow" with buckets lined up underneath.  I may be in denial, but since I actively use these fleeces, I don't think I can be classified as a hoarder.  I've also thrown out or given away "mistake" fleeces: those I've discovered later to have breaks or serious flaws that I missed due to a case of delirium that sometimes overcomes me when I am surrounded by too many gorgeous, crimpy, glistening, yummy fleece.  Thirty years from now people won't be having to pick their way through tiny passages made in my house by plastic buckets crammed with stash.  I also never leave a fleece unwashed. so there won't be stinky, tacky, greasy plastic bags of raw fiber either. 

Which is why I am taking the  "No More Fleece: Extreme De-Stash Pledge."  Ravelers are welcome to peruse my stash page if they think I am overstating the situation.  I still have three or four things to add to it too my stash page as part of my "come clean" 2010 pledge.

I will go Cold Sheep and avoid the source of my most serious temptation:  Fiber Fairs.  I plan to not go to them until next spring.  Sorry sheep farmers and braid dyers.  But I did stock up at Tallgrass Farm and during my visit to Elihu (where I also buy lamb--her freezers are strategically placed near her bagged-for- sale freshly-sheared fleece stacks), so I think I can do it. I hope.

Below is a re-ply of the braid I purchased from Ambrosia and Bliss at the only Fiber Festival I've attended this year.  A lovely Rambouillet roving dyed in her Planet Earth colorway. I ran it through the wheel one more time to firm up the ply.  You can compare it to my first showing a blog or two down to see what it looked like the first time through.  I think it is much improved.
A second run through the wheel improved the ply on this Rambouillet two-ply.

If you are interested in joining me in this "No More Fleece: Extreme De-Stash." Please let me know by contacting me or posting a comment below. We can form a support group of sorts and of course, you will have your own strategy for resisting temptation. Remember, this is for people with extreme stashes. The plan is to not buy any fleece until the next vernal equinox.  Can it be done?  Can we resist?  Can we make a dent in that time? Time will tell...


  1. Good luck with your pledge!

    I found (for me) that the "cash only" pledge, works pretty well if I still want to go to a class or visit the marketplace at a fiber festival. I withdraw $X before walking through the door and leave everything else behind. I am only allowed the spend the cash I have on me at the time, and this significantly limits impulse purchases, but still allows me to have fun shopping :)

  2. Thanks! And I love your "cash only" pledge, which I will definitely adopt come 2012.

  3. What a sweet little lamb. Is that his mom in the photo? She is pretty, too. Very nice fleece, hard to resist, especially at fiber fairs. It's the smell of the sheep, and the whole experience, it just makes you want to take some of it home. The "cash only" idea is a very good one, as well.

  4. Let me just say now this yarn is fantastic to work with. I am crocheting with it at a moment and it moves on my hook like a dream!