Spinning with Brown Corriedale
The Corriedale is a dual purpose breed- used for meat and wool. There were originally bred in New Zealand to live in low rainfall areas and have a long staple length. Because they are a duel purpose breed the fiber lacks the delicate softness of Merino.
I picked Brown Corriedale as the final color for my Sampler Vest because the color went perfectly with the other shades I had chosen. When I purchased it I went solely off the color and that fact that the name 'Corriedale' was different than the other fibers I had picked. Since my goal was to try spinning a variety of sheep breeds this fiber fit perfectly.
The first thing I noticed about this fiber was its coarseness. With a 25 to 30 micron count it is not the softest wool. I think the stuff I got must be more on the 30 side because it is a bit scratchy. When people think of wool and wool sweaters they are probably thinking of something similar to this fiber.
Spinning the actual fiber was nice enough. It was not as dreamy as the Merino or Tasmin Comeback but the fiber was well prepared and I managed to make a decent yarn. The average staple length is 3.5 inches, which was slightly easier to spin than the Manx Loaghtan which averages 3 inches but not as smooth as the Tasmin Comeback which is in the 4 to 5 inches range.
After the yarn was knitted into the vest I really loved the color and I think it really anchors the piece. I will however, say that this wool is a bit itchy. It doesn't bother me too much in the vest because it is at the bottom but I defiantly could not wear an entire sweater out of this wool.
The Etsy seller that I bought it from noted that it would be good for felting, wall hangings and dryer balls- basically things that won't be next to your skin. You could get away with it as a sweater if you wear something between it and your skin so don't completely rule it out as garment wool- just be cautious. At $5.50 for 4 oz it is far less than the $8.50 for 4oz of Merino so it definatly is the more economical choice. For a pound of fiber you are looking at $22 versus $34. Luxury truly does come with a premium price.
So overall the Brown Corriedale comes in a nice rich brown color but does have a bit of scratchiness. Wearable, with caveats, but ideal for felting and decor items.
If you would like to purchase some Brown Corriedale Roving I acquired mine from the Etsy seller Beesybees.
Have you spun with Corriedale? Did you have a different experience than I did? We'd love to hear about it in the comment sections.
Thanks for reading and happy crafting!