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Jun 24

Default Yarn Challenge – Paul

Paul Ellewanger’s barber pole yarn.

This article comes from Denise, who has been a wonderful spinning mentor for Paul.

After Spinzilla last year, Paul, who is our master molder and Cranbrook Loom builder, joined the ranks of the spinning enthusiasts here at Schacht. He then took Maggie Casey’s spinning class where she teaches how to process and spin from fleece, and then dye the yarn using acid and natural dyes.

After the class, Paul was hooked on spinning and jumped in with both feet and bought a 30″ Schacht Reeves. As a new spinner, the office staff had recommended he buy a Ladybug–which he got too!

Since Paul really took to spinning from fleece, I introduced him to my local shepherdess and we picked out a fleece together. We decided on Agatha, a beautiful chocolate fleece with hints of grey, white, and black.

Paul and Denise pick out fleece from a local shepherdess

Wool fleece in dark gray named

Paul and I also got into carding together. We had a bunch of dyed Louet Corriedale fiber in a range of colors, and we came up with a blend of French Blue and Silver Grey with a touch of Snowflake.  This made a fantastic turquoise color that reminds us of sipping umbrella drinks on a white sandy beach while looking out at the rich saturated hues of the ocean.

There bundles of dyed fiber in held in hands

Colors clockwise from the top left: French Blue, Silver Grey, Snowflake.

Paul and Denise card the three colors together.

Paul and Denise card the three colors together.

Blended batt of fibers

Blended batt

Since Paul simply adores his Schacht-Reeves, his Ladybug doesn’t get much attention. He’s decided to give his “other wheel” more of a work out and started bringing it to work where he spins on his lunch hour and breaks.

Paul spinning on a Ladybug spinning wheel

Paul Spinning his “Agatha”.

After spinning both Agatha and the ocean yarn, he decided to ply them together in a barber pole yarn. We all like the way it turned out! We look forward to see what he comes up with next as he progresses.

Close up of finished barber pole yarn.

Close up of finished barber pole yarn.


  1. gazell
    June 25, 2014 at 11:54 am ·

    Agatha is gorgeous! What is the breed? My semi experienced guess is corriedale.

  2. Benjamin
    June 25, 2014 at 2:49 pm ·

    Hello Gazell! The breed is CVM – California Variegated Mutant, which is pretty different from Corriedale.
    Corriedale has fewer crimps per inch, and larger crimps. It also is a little more coarse.

  3. gazell
    June 28, 2014 at 2:22 am ·

    I never thought if corriedale as coarse, so this must be ubersoft. That is one lovely fleece.

  4. Benjamin
    June 30, 2014 at 2:02 pm ·

    Haha! It's all relative!