I tried this last night, but blogger was being a jerk, so let's try it again.
Remember how I got all that wool as a gift? It looks like this:
Because it was a gift I can't tell you what kind of sheep it came off of. It was a black sheep, though.
Several hours were spent washing and picking bird seed out of a small amount of that bag. Apparently something had nested in the bag at some point, because I made a mess all over the porch with bird seed and corn that came out of it.
Anyway, after about 2 hours, maybe a little more, of washing individual locks of wool, I had this:
I know, they look like rodents.
Next is carding, which can be done on a drum carder (which is crazy expensive and so not in my budget right now) or on hand carders (also rather pricey). OR...it can be done on dog brushes, which is what I used. It would be easier with actual wool carders, but since I got two brushes for half the price of one carder, I'm going to stick with the brushes, at least until Rhinebeck this year.
Carding aligns the fibers so that they're all the same length and going in the same direction. Then they can be rolled into rolags and spun.
That's all I've got so far. It's a time consuming process, but it's fun. When I've got some spun, I'll show you!