If your machine has an automatic fabric softener dispenser, fill it with 1 cup vinegar. Most wool will shrink if you don't wash and dry it properly. Father and son duo making innovative, generational fiber art equipment in the SF Bay Area since 1970. Suds do not equal cleaner wool. Wool is an acid fiber and is softest and has a kinder hand when the pH of the washing water remains at 7 (neutral pH) or below. This is Henry’s wool scouring method that he has refined through years of tinkering, with the goal being to consistently produce a clean wool fleece while being as efficient as possible with his time and the amount of soap and water used. Let the water swish through the fleece. Easy, step by step instructions for scouring wool at home without felting it. A bathtub or deep kitchen sink works almost as well as a wash machine – especially if made of cast iron. Your mileage may vary, but the theory is that if the dirt it towards the outside of the bag, it will be able to find its way out of the bag, rather than being trapped inside. This particular washing machine’s agitator is broken – which is great as we won’t accidentally use that function to make felt. This is pretty important factor, take my word for it or if you need to have more detailed information I highly recommend reading Scour Wool Like a Boss written by: Mary Egber I recommend using Unicorn Power Scour. ). Depending on the breed, how it was sheared, and how much skirting took place, one bag may hold an entire fleece. However, fleece with extraordinarily dirty or tightly closed tips may still have dirt in them. Once the fleece is bagged, tuck the drawstring inside the bag so that it doesn’t get stuck on the agitator in the wash machine or anywhere else in the process. Here are some of the answers to common questions about machine washing and hand washing … You will be able to take a stinky, greasy, dirty sheep fleece and turn it into lovely, clean wool, ready for spinning, carding or felting! Close lid on wash machine, set timer for 20-25 minutes and walk away. When wool is machine … Turn off washing machine. Add Unicorn Power Scour and stir in. Walk away. Do anything but agitate the fleece. Don’t let the wool migrate all over the basin. You do not want to attempt measuring 160*F water while you are in the middle of the washing process. There are many methods for cleaning fleece, all with the same general principles. How to Wash Raw Wool and Fiber correctly (without felting it!) Remove bag(s) of wool. The amount of water and soap to use is best discovered through trial and error. This removes most of the water. Most water heaters can replenish the required amount of water in the 20-25-minute range, and a large pot of water will get up to temperature in about the same length of time. If the cleaning tag says hand wash only, then avoid the washing machine altogether. Remove bag(s) of wool and set them on your drying rack. Turn the heater up to its highest setting and make sure everyone else in the house knows not to use any hot water until you are finished washing and have turned the heat back down to the normal temperature. Washing raw fleece is a straightforward process, though many different methods exist. Alpaca is inherently dusty and benefits from multiple overnight soaks and spinouts prior to beginning the wash routine. STOP AGITATION, press wool into the water and let soak for 15 mins. Most of the time, this method of washing will produce a fleece that is clean enough that any additional dirt will come out in the carding or combing process. Let it sit for 20-25 minutes. Decide how much wool you want to wash at once, and where you want to wash it. Put the wool in the second bath (that bath is the same temperature now as the first bath). Now you don’t have to run to the dry cleaner whenever your wool blanket needs refreshing! Dissolve a gentle cleaner in water first, to prevent it from reacting with the wet … Squeeze it slowly and gently to help drain off the dirty, soapy water. To wash the wool and remove it from the water, support it well as you lift it carefully from the water. Add the wool, making sure the bag or bags are below the surface of the water. Fill machine with 160*F or hotter water. With multiple soaks, Henry has found that one wash and two rinses can be quite effective for washing an alpaca fleece. Two keys throughout the process are to maintain a consistent temperature and agitate the wool as little as possible. Remove bag(s) of wool. Garment bags typically hold 3-4 pounds of fleece, lingerie bags typically hold about half a pound. How to wash silk: The golden rules. The steps below are Henry’s process in a washing machine – the order of operations (when to remove fleece or add water) may vary slightly if working with a sink or tub. Spin out washing machine and drain water. Some other things you can do to avoid felting are to never run water directly on the wool, and never vary the temperature of the wash and rinse baths. When you are washing your wool clothing or bedding, just double-check the water temperature. If you machine-dry wool on high-heat, it may shrink drastically. We have a dedicated water heater just for this purpose but using a household water heater is fine. Unicorn Power Scour. Much of the mud will soften and rinse away. Cocobolo. The closer the water heater is to the wash tub or washing machine, the better. Our water heater and washing machine are side by side; we fill almost directly out of the water heater with an insulated rubber hose. It is essential to remember that exposing raw wool to heat and agitation will cause it to “felt”. If the water and detergent can't move through the wool, the wool won't get clean. The water you will be working with is hot enough to cause instant burns; eliminating potential snags and hazards in the name of safety is always a good idea. Use a timer to stay on top of the process so that too much time doesn’t lapse and the water temperature does not fall below 140*F. Agitation or movement of the wool while in the hot water will result in felting. Introduction of Sheep raw wool washing cleaning machine: This wool washing machine made of stainless steel, the material is wearable and easy to clean. The standby or waiting time between each wash will vary depending on equipment, but 20-25 minutes has been the sweet spot for each of the combinations that Henry has used so far. ; Add vinegar. A stainless steel electric food warmer is a good solution for washing smaller batches (1-2 pounds at a time) and provides the tub and water heating component in a portable and efficient package. Let your fleece drape back into the water...no need to bunch it up. Machine Washing Instructions: Here's how I wash fleeces in my washing machine- Fill the tub with hot water. – and marking the water level on the inside of the tub. Once the washing machine is finished, promptly remove your garments both from the machine … Let the wool soak for another five or ten minutes, with no agitation at all. Lay a clean, dry towel out on a … Locks will open and separate easiest while they are warm and moist just after the final rinse. Add up to approximately 2 pounds of wool, opening it up to remove debris as you go. A separate area may be used for skirting and drying, but isn’t necessary as they both need the same basic elements: a flat area capable of laying out an entire fleece (or as much as you are washing at one time) with 1/2” to 1” openings for dirt and vegetable matter to fall out when skirting and to allow for air flow when drying. Add up to approximately 2 pounds of wool, opening it up to remove debris as you go. Here in the San Francisco Bay Area we have excellent water, so Henry didn’t find it necessary to tweak the quantity of soap from the recommended amount. A good scour requires moisture, heat, and agitation as well, in the presence of a detergent. Don’t use a front load washing machine with wool. At temperatures below 140*F, the lanolin may reattach itself to the wool fibers which makes it very hard to remove again, so the goal is to keep the water in the 140*F – 160*F range. Supplies. The process consists of skirting and bagging the fleece, three washes, two rinses, and drying. Water conditions may also determine the amount of detergent necessary, with hard water requiring more Power Scour. If you wish, at this time, you may add moth-repellent essential oils such as lavender during this second rinse cycle. Lay the fleece out on your surface and do your best to recreate fleece as it was on the animal. Overnight Soak with Power Scour in cool water, let sit 10-12 hours. If using a washing machine, this means filling the machine with known quantities of water – one-gallon jugs, two-gallon buckets, etc. Read a book. Wash wool clothing by hand or on the gentle/delicate cycle in your washing machine. Some fleece may require splitting into thirds or fourths, depending on the size of the fleece, the bag, and your wash tub. Once the towel has soaked up a good deal of the water, you can speed drying by moving the wool to a fresh dry towel. Spin out washing machine and drain water. If your water heater does not produce water at 160 degrees Fahrenheit, you may need to supplement the water in your tub by boiling water on the stove. Blending Boards are back in stock in five flavors, A sneak peek at this quarter’s Good Clean Fiber, Juniper. Remove wool carefully, supporting it well. Remove wool from bags and spread out on drying rack as thinly as possible with the space available. to protect them from agitation and friction that can cause pilling. Contact us for an estimated time to expect your finished items. Give this wool a cold water soak (in its bag, of course) for a day before washing it--no detergent is needed in this presoak. Drying and Stretching the Wool Garment Soak up water with a towel. While you should always read the care label on your silk items before washing them to check for washing instructions, there are a few golden rules to washing silk that you can follow too. Open the door and put the dirty wool into it, add wool cleaner, shut the door, the water will into the machine automatically, select the washing time(usually 30 minutes),the machine will Once the bag or bags of wool are under the water, leave them alone for the entire waiting period. Place on a towel or in an empty tub or container. Skirt and bag fleece. At the proper washing temperature, water will cause burns so investing in a pair of thick rubber gloves is necessary. Treat your wool items carefully and they should last you a … Vegetable matter is also typically easier to spot when moist, so this is also a good time to pick out large chunks of VM that did not wash out, See table above for recommended quantities of water, detergent, and fleece. Heating the wool grease and then allowing it to cool on the fiber will bind it to the fiber and make it very difficult to remove. Select Your Cycle: Select the woolens or delicate cycle on your washing machine and make sure the water temperature is cold and the spin is on low. Link in bio for our spec, Overnight Soak with Power Scour in cool water, let sit 10-12 hours, Wash #1 with Power Scour in hot water; let sit 20-25 mins, Wash #2 with Power Scour in hot water; let sit 20-25 mins, Wash #3 with Power Scour in hot water; let sit 20-25 mins, Rinse #1 with no detergent in hot water; let sit 20-25 mins, Rinse #2 with Fiber Rinse in hot water; let sit 20-25 mins.