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I’ve had a drum carder on hire from the local spinning guild for a while now, and played around with it a bit. Most of what I’ve been carding has been blends of some description and I’ve struggled to see how anyone could think this is fun! But my May club shipment of fibre from Crown Mountain Farms came, and when Klaus said he had more of it to dispense I jumped on the offer because it was so beautiful and just begged to be carded into lovely fat batts for a beautiful woollen yarn (breath) to be knit into a snuggly cardigan.

So I ended up with twenty eight ounces of Columbia top in the club colourway, Eye of the Tiger, fat squidgy bundles of attitude-filled fibre that looked a bit like this. You can see why I fell for it, right? I almost want to turn the lights off just to see if it glows in the dark!

Crown Mountain Farm Columbia top

I’d just like to come back to that number – twenty-eight ounces. For the metric users like me, that’s almost 800g of fibre. And of course I’m a novice at carding, so it took me a while to get the hang of doing this.

Ashford drum carder with CMF fibre on it

But I did – and I figured out that the optimal amount of this fibre for the drum was just over 20g. This, I found, was still aligning the fibres nicely without mussing them too much, but also allowed me to get the batt off the carder more easily. I just love the way that the different colours fed into one another here, and gave such a rich textural dimension to the batts.

Columbia batt

And finally, after three or four sessions of carding totally about eight hours or so, I got all this! Nom nom nom.

Batt bundles!

Because there’s a fair bit of variation between the bundles in terms of colour, and even along the length of them so that batts in each group look completely different, I have a cunning plan for mixing the colour just that little bit more. But more on that next time, because for now I’m exhausted and I’m going to sit down and do some knitting while I watch NCIS.