What To Do With Polypay

Polypay is a breed I hadn’t spun before.  So all of this was new to me.


Following washing I took a good hard look at the fleece.  For a non coated fleece from the Midwest this was pretty clean.  The structure of the lock is rather disorganized and the hand is what I call “crisp”.  To me crisp means it is very springy and bounces back well.   This I attribute to the strong influence of the Dorset on this breed.  The tips are not as yellow as this photo shows, sigh, the blue background was probably not the best choice to photograph this wool on.  The staple length of this particular fleece was about 3″.

Carding this fiber was a joy, in fact I went a bit overboard and carded more than my sample needed.  If I was going to do more than sample, I would first flick the tips then card it.  Carding is for organizing the fiber not to clean it!  Flicking helps open the locks for further teasing which will help some of the vegetable matter (vm) to fall out.


This is how the carded fiber spun up.   Blessedly the photo doesn’t show the trapped vm.  I spun this up on a drop spindle using a modified long draw.  It behaved itself well.

Combing this fiber, on the other hand, did clean out the short bits and some of the debris.  But once again, this is not the same as flicking and teasing.  Though with combing you probably don’t need to the tease the fiber.

But it sure looks pretty sitting there in those little bundles.


Spinning it was a different story.  It was more difficult.  With the short staple length you had to be careful while drafting.  While it created a smoother yarn, you lost some of the bounce that this fiber has.


The top sample is the combed fiber, and the bottom is the carded fiber.  Both samples were somewhat over-spun, but not extremely.  After handling these I’ve decided to flick the ends then drum card the rest of this fiber.  I imagine this becoming a three ply sock yarn.  Did I hear you gasp?  Yes, sock yarn.  Merino is not a good sock yarn for long term wear.  This stuff should remain springy, resist felting and wear for a good long time.


5 thoughts on “What To Do With Polypay

  1. Very interesting, considering I have some polypay waiting to be processed. I think I will sample some of mine, before I send it off. I may just fall in love and process it all, myself.

    Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thanks for your thoughtful and instructive posts. I’ve only had one polypay spinning experience and that fleece had a yellow band across the midpoint of every lock. However…bounce and springiness were exactly the words to describe my experience.
    BTW…”you made my day”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s