- Fine merino top
- Mohair locks
I started with the merino top and loaded it on the comb. When loading commercially prepared top it's usually best to drag it across the top tines and down and out towards yourself. as it pulls free naturally at the edge of it's staple length. It becomes important as you bring all the fibers together. For best results the staple lengths of all the blended fibers should be of similar length.
Next I loaded some gorgeous mohair locks. When loading locks take notice of the cut side and load them along the tines and leave the tips facing out to be combed. This makes it a lot easier to work with this type of fiber. I really like adding mohair as well as teeswater and other fibers with a beautiful lock structure. I does make it more chunky but it's amazing how the texture adds depth and character to the blend.
Next I add the silk. This is one of my favorite fiber types to add to a blend. It brings softness and beauty with a sheen that compliments the other fibers.
Now comes the bling. This is the fun part. I add Angelina strands. I don't add a lot because it can be a bit stringy and can interfere with a smooth blend, but just a little bit can really add a delightful look and feel to the roving.
Lastly, I like to add a bit more of the merino top. it will cover the Angelina and balance the blend together. When it's complete, from the back draw the fibers up a bit to fluff them out and make it easier to blend with a comb or diz off.
Now it's time to make a couple of choices. If you want a smooth blend of fibers that is a bit more uniform with fewer chunks I recommend using a second comb to straighten and transfer the fiber to it. This process can be done 1 or 2 times in order to get and partially blended roving or a more fully homogeneous roving which will also have less color definition as a result. And you could also stop here and simply diz it off and you would have a wonderfully chunky art roving for a nice core-spun yarn. I choose to do one transfer to the comb then exchange combs on the holder and diz it off.
Now that I am happy with blend I can use my cherry diz to pull the roving. This technique takes some practice to diz off a roving efficiently. the first few times it may end up thinning out in places but after a few tries it's becomes easier to guage how much pressure to use to get the best result.
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