Friday, April 29, 2016

A Woolly Touch of France

Happy lamb

It’s been a tough week. I have been dyeing lots, organising all the clubs, packing, labelling and more and then immediately tackled the next huge task: the Vikings Adventure, which is , I am happy to say, almost all shipped to all the people who signed on to join this exciting blend filled with “Viking” sheep.

Thankfully, I have huge amounts of energy. Don’t ask me where it comes from…Paul thinks I’m an alien and just by breathing and being around fibre I “inhale energy”…It did come with a price though: I can still run a marathon-like task of dyeing, blending and carding and doing all my craft BUT there is a pressure building to get so much done in the time frame I have set myself: for the clubs, the adventures and the upcoming big shows.
 I do set myself a high bar of things to achieve and once I promise something to anybody, and that includes myself, I stick to it. Rain, hail or shine.

The strain was starting to show mentally , especially because there were a lot of things that were starting to annoy me immensely : like promises made by others but not kept, stupid comments on social media (LOL..i and forget) and more stuff that in the end I have no control over.

I kept on saying to myself I have to let it go because you cannot control those kind of things but it is easier said than done. So, I felt my “fuse” getting shorter and shorter, which, I can tell you, is a bad thing for me.
As soon as I start to get a short fuse it is REALLY dangerous to be around me. I am not a violent person or a confrontational one at all but oh boy, I felt I could join the team of Marvel Super heroes to go into combat.

Lucky for me, I got some amazing parcels filled with chocolate and love from a wonderful friend Fiona and received some grounding Reiki from the awesome Felicity. I feel much calmer now and less of a danger to turn into a female version of the

Without bursting into song here and start bellowing “Let it go!” at the top of my voice , it does help to just let things go you have absolutely no control over. Let it be (now THAT’s a much better song

Anyway, here I am, it is Friday again and update day and this week, filled with Vikings and Doctor Who (the adventure and the club of April) has also been filled with something extra special just for this update today. I am offering you something new and exciting: a beautiful squishy wool for you to spin !!!

The fibre I am offering you on today’s update is not exactly from a rare sheep breed, but it is a fibre that normally is not offered to spin because it is very hard to process due to its short staplelength being a down type of fleece: Charollais.

Charollais sheep are from the same region of France as Charolais cattle. Charollais sheep can be found throughout France, with a particularly high concentration in Bourgogne, the Massif Central, Poitou-Charentes, the Limousin and the south-west.
The breed has very recently been introduced to Australia as well, in SA and NSW and also in New Zealand. The main focus however of the breeders here is on meat production and not on wool, which is a shame because the fleece is really nice to work with.

The Charollais wool is short but dense, exhibits a very nice fine crimp and takes the dye very well. It is the processing that makes all the difference though.
When you process shorter staplelengths and you overwork the carding it can result in a very messy and neppy top. As with everything slowly does it and a lot of care and love has gone into these tops on offer to you today.

For a meat breed sheep, the Charollais has unusually fine fibre. Almost square, short locks with a micron of about 21 to 28 microns. Because of the short staple , about 4 to 6 cms) your singles will be better off spun with a higher than normal twist to give them the integrity they need in a stable yarn. You can spin them in a woollen style, which is great to give it that elasticity, but a worsted style spinning gives you more control over the fineness of your single.

The Charollais is by no means a superfine merino, but I really love this down type fibre , which reminds me of Hog Island and Hampshire Down and makes soft next to skin garments from socks to jumpers and shawls.

I have prepared all the tops ready to ship but I do not have a huge quantity, since the processing takes such a loooooong time.
I can offer you the natural coloured tops OR you can opt for hand dyed semi solid tonal tops all dyed with natural dyes. The colours I can offer you are : Woad ( a beautiful tealy blue), Weld ( a gorgeous moss green), Walnut (a warm brown), Indigo Australis ( A grey blue) and Mushroom( a pastel pink colour). All these magical colours go so well together ! You can choose any colour you like or ..all of

I only have a very limited amount of Charollais tops and I will only start the dye baths after I receive your colour preferences.
The shipping of the hand dyed Charollais tops will be mid to end of May. The natural Charollais tops can be posted on Monday.

Have a fun weekend and snaffle ! All the “ how to order details” are shown at the bottom of this blog. You can always contact me on facebook or ravelry and even if you do not see something here , ask me: I am always happy to enable !

Charollais Tops   

100+gram tops AU$22

soft down type wool tops that are wonderful to spin and wear

When ordering please make sure you mention which colour option(s) you would like: Natural, Woad, Indigo, Weld, Mushroom or Walnut and the quantity of tops per colour.

Natural Charollais tops

Woad colour 

Indigo colour sample 
(dyed on another type of wool but just to give you an idea of the colour)

Dyed with Mushroom pigments

Weld dyed colour

Walnut dyed colour

Dates to put in your Calendar !!


Saturday May 7th   10am-3pm

Healesville Spinners and Weavers Guild Chat, Spin and Shop

Please join me with the Healesville Spinners and Weavers on Saturday for their annual celebration.
I will be doing a talk about the IxCHeLbunny farm, fibres and yarns and lots more !!! There will be fibres to cuddle (and buy) and also spindles of all shapes and sizes.

The event is open to all but everybody is asked to bring a plate of food to share with the others to make it even more fun. The Hall opens at 11am with a group meeting and my talk will start around 12. After the talk there will be ample opportunity to browse, shop and mingle.

V.C. Mullett Hall (Badger Creek Hall), 358 Badger Creek Road, Badger Creek.
The hall is located next to the Badger Creek C.F.A. Station and opposite the Badger Creek Primary School. There is off road parking.

Sunday May 29th10am-3pm

Victorian Hand Knitters Guild Show Coburg Town Hall

THE extra ordinary super fluffy yarny event in Melbourne !!!
I will be there with lots of hand dyed tops for spinning and felting and happy rainbow yarn and sock yarn, some extra special art yarns and much much more!!!!
As well as some amazing Lair of the Bearded Dragon spindles and bowls that are pure magic to spin with !


Friday July 15th- Sunday 17th, 9am-5pm

Bendigo Sheep and Wool Show
THE event of the year !!!! Not to be missed!! I will be there in the Flower (Power Bunny) Shed again with heaps of new goodies, hand dyed and hand spun, IxCHeL new blends and rare sheep breed adventures and much much more ! Including a world first of something AMAZING AND FUN!!!!! Shhh not telling ! but it is AWESOME !!!!


2nd of October
Black n Coloured Sheep FIELD DAY  in Cranbourne!

Landscape dyes 

 100g tubs   AU$11 

Want to dye your own with easy to use acid dyes? I have been selling these Landscape dyes at my workshops and shows for a long time :  They are extremely easy to use and come in great shades.
Just contact me with the name of the colour you are after and I will get right back to you.

Have a creative week!
Please don't hesitate to contact me at any time if you have any questions okay? : Always happy to enable.

All my contact details are here:

How To Order:

1. You can email me on ixchel at rabbit dot com dot au or ixchelbunny at yahoo dot com dot au
2. Message me on facebook or 
3. Message me on  where I am Ixchelbunny.

I will email you right back with all your order details and payment methods.

Any questions? Any custom orders for yarn or dyeing fibre? : Please don’t hesitate to ask! Always happy to enable.

Thank you so much for your help and support !


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