My niece has a friend who raises angora goats and at our Valentine Fairy making party, she asked if I'd like some angora to use for the doll hair. Oh my yes!!!!!!!!!!!!
I didn't quite realize what I was getting myself in for when I said yes. The "raw" fur didn't exactly look like these perfect pink curls.
This photo is of the finished product. The long, angora soft, curls are wonderful, and quite pretty. But I have to warn you, the rest of my photos aren't as nice to look at.
Of course, I didn't realize that it came complete with all this, this, well, we will call it detritus.... that had to be picked out.
Some hay, no big deal. Some burrs, a few sticks, sure, no problem. A bit of unidentifiable something or another. Sure, I'll dig that out. I won't even think about it maybe being a poo clot.
Actually it wasn't bad at all. I started out being very careful and conservative, and as I went along I became more ruthless. Instead of picking out the little bits, I tore away hunks around the little bits.
After that, it gets rinsed. And rinsed. And rinsed, a handful at a time. The instructions said to do it outdoors with a hose. I didn't have that option in our below zero weather, so used my sink. I was pretty surprised to see how easy it was to do and how little mess it was. The stuff clumps to itself and doesn't go all over the place. The clump stays politely where you set it while it is being rinsed.
Next, I tied up all the picked and rinsed hair in a net bag that had held onions.
The bag went into a pot of almost boiling water, that I added a ton of dish soap to. Then, I set it in the sink with a lid on the pot, stirring every once in a while and letting it soak for an hour.
At this point, the whole counter top and the sinks got bleached and scrubbed. Like I mentioned, it wasn't messy. The hair sticks to itself and didn't clog drains or float away. It stays where you put it. It was mostly the germs I was going after when I cleaned up.
After that, I rinsed it, then put the bag back in the pot with equally hot water, no soap, to soak again.
While it was still wet, I took it to the studio and dyed it with fiber reactive dyes. I was going for hot pink and raspberry colors along with some blond.
Parts of it look great, but the color did fade as it dried where the hair was more gray to start with.
And some of it was clotted, and clumped, not soft like wool roving, so I cut those out. I think that maybe it was supposed to be pulled and treated somehow, but I didn't want to disturb the nice, curling parts that were silky, so I just used what I liked and not the rest.
Much of it, where the gray was too strong to cover, will be good to save for witch or crone hair. Or to make a grammie fairy? But some of it was sweetly curling hot pink.
All in all, an interesting experiment. I've been told that I can get more hair from her if I'd like, but I'm not sure if I like the gray goat color. If it was white and I could dye it pastel shades, it would be ideal for my Birdsong fairy class. But for the gray that I ended up with, it isn't a color I'll need much of. I think this bagful will do.
PS- if you'd like to sign up for a chance to win a copy of Where Women Create, please leave a comment on my previous post I'll announce the winner on my next post.