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One Year of French Angora Fluff

Keeping rabbits for their wool and methods of using it.
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One Year of French Angora Fluff

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Ferra » Wed Nov 07, 2018 10:43 pm


Hi guys, true to the chat box - here's how one year of a small French Angora herd went for me.
I started with an imported trio, and had 4 purebred litters kindled over the year.

So we got a lot of fluff:
2018-11-07 19.32.51.jpg
2018-11-07 19.32.51.jpg (196.44 KiB) Viewed 68 times


Which packed down nicely into bags in the end:
2018-11-07 19.58.10.jpg
2018-11-07 19.58.10.jpg (181.05 KiB) Viewed 68 times


All in all, there was 1160g or 2.6lbs minus the few grams I took (and forgot to record) to make this neck-warmer:
2018-11-07 20.12.07.jpg
2018-11-07 20.12.07.jpg (196.77 KiB) Viewed 68 times



All in all, it's been a good year, with the only real tragedy being the eventual loss of my herd buck this fall. Thankfully, I believe I have two nice solid young bucklings out of both of my does who can go on to replace him in year 2.

And now I have to make plans for all my angora. I haven't sold any fibre because that would involve being ORGANIZED. And well, this year has not been conducive to that at all. But if I get my ducks in a row, I think I want an angora-alpaca-silk blanket. Maybe I can work that in as my "Master Spinner Level 5" final project somehow, because in level 5, they're going to finally let me use angora for my homework... About dang time, I say, as I may be literally swimming in it!
Raising purebred French Angora in Alberta, Canada
http://www.angoryrabbits.ca

Instagram: @angoryrabbit

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Re: One Year of French Angora Fluff

Post Number:#2  Unread postby MaggieJ » Thu Nov 08, 2018 1:18 am


Oh my goodness, Ferra! That is an amazing amount of fluff! I love the subtle natural colours, particularly the one that looks like melted butterscotch ripple ice cream. :lol: :icecream:

You neck warmer looks so cozy. Are the buttons slices of antler, perhaps?

Your plan for an Angora-alpaca-silk blanket sounds wonderful. I once had a pullover that was an Angora-silk blend. I loved the texture, so soft and fluffy and yet silky to the touch.

You've had a great first year -- though it's a pity about your buck -- amd I hope Year Two is even better. :clover: :clover: :clover:
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Re: One Year of French Angora Fluff

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Nymphadora » Thu Nov 08, 2018 1:32 am


:wbounce:

:bow:

Hellooooo gorgeous! :in_love:
That is a slice of fiber heaven right there, Ferra! Thank you for sharing the pictures (that cowl looks so warm and cozy!), and congratulations on a great year with your fiber herd. I'm sorry you lost the buck, but hopefully those bucklings make up for him in time.

I know you said the organization had to catch up, but any chance you could post a couple close-up shots of the fiber with the color name attached? I'd love to see the color patterns on the hair shafts... and how they compare with the same colors in other breeds. It would be cool to see up close, in any case. :oops:

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Re: One Year of French Angora Fluff

Post Number:#4  Unread postby Ferra » Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:35 am


MaggieJ wrote:You neck warmer looks so cozy. Are the buttons slices of antler, perhaps?


That they are! :)

MaggieJ wrote:Your plan for an Angora-alpaca-silk blanket sounds wonderful. I once had a pullover that was an Angora-silk blend. I loved the texture, so soft and fluffy and yet silky to the touch.


I was thinking that blanket would be one of the warmest things I'd yet encountered, as both alpaca and angora are hollow fibres, which pushes their insulation value up a lot compared to wool. But yes, also very soft, silky and fluffy.


Nymphadora wrote:but any chance you could post a couple close-up shots of the fiber with the color name attached? I'd love to see the color patterns on the hair shafts... and how they compare with the same colors in other breeds. It would be cool to see up close, in any case.


It's possible, but as mentioned subject to time/organization as to if I pull it off. I felt guilty posting here, because my other post about micron counts is just below this - and I've got a few pending requests there to do some "contrast and compare" photos of angora vs wool vs alpaca vs. etc. And then for my own needs I need to make up a formal micron testing process, do an extensive study of what happens to the structure of angora wool when dyed (I keep reading about the dyeing process 'destroying' the air cells in the fibre and I need to figure out how much of that is true and/or applies to my dyes, methods and fibres.)

So I can add close up photos for colors to the list, but I don't know if I'll get to it all that soon.

My impression of it, just based on the contrast between my Angora and my NZ cross herds is that the colors look very, very similar on the kits, because the fur starts so short. But as the wool lengthens, the angora colors tend to go a dilute version of the short-fur color. Some of the richer colored piles, like the dark grey, were from animals that had more guard hair - I find my heavy guard hair animals are darker, but they do make a more halo-y and slightly less soft yarn.

Color based Confession: I may be in love with the wool from an opal doe I kept back. It has the agouti bands, but it goes "Light silver, caramel, light silver fading to cream" and when spun up, you get a light grey with warm almost lavender undertones. I need to finish my dye experiment, so that I can see what happens when I take that color and use it as a base. I expect it will lend some glorious complexity to the final dye. :)
Raising purebred French Angora in Alberta, Canada
http://www.angoryrabbits.ca

Instagram: @angoryrabbit

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MaggieJ, michaels4gardens, Nymphadora

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