Frequently Asked Questions about Our Yarns
Is our Bluefaced Leicester British BFL?
Yes, all the Bluefaced Leicester wool is grown in the United Kingdom and bought at auction from the British Wool Marketing Bard, of which Wool2Dye4 is a member.
What special prep is needed before dyeing Wool2Dye4 yarns?
Most of our yarns are wool-based, which are protein fibers. Protein fibers should only be dyed with acid dyes, a process which requires acid added to allow the color to 'bite' the fiber and heat, to set the color. The acid is usually white distilled vinegar. We do have a few cotton yarns, which are cellulose fibers, and these yarns should be dyed with fiber-reactive dyes. Cellulose fibers require salts and time to take dyes, and are washed thoroughly after the dye process, unlike protein fibers.
Our yarns simply need soaking in cool water for around 20 minutes for most yarns, silk and cottons may take a little longer, making the water warmer will aid absorption. The yarn is made specifically for dyeing, so no scouring is needed. Sometimes, for yarns with silk content, we recommend soaking a minimum of two hours in warm water, and preferably overnight, for best results.
Choke ties are applied at the mill, they may or may not be loose or tight enough for your own dye method, however we aim to have enough to endure the dyeing process, but you want to add more.
Washing our yarns: 100% superwash merino yarns may be washed by machine on a gentle setting, and then laid flat to dry. Superwash does not mean superdry. The addition of any non-superwash fiber will change the dynamic of the effect of machine washing, and we recommend that all other fibers, even the addition to a superwash merino yarn, be washed by hand in warm soapy water, and laid flat to dry. Luxury fibers such as cashmere, silk, alpaca, yak ... these fibers should not be tossed into a washing machine.
Is our Merino from Australia?
No, we only use South American Merino in order to avoid the muesling issues.
Where are our fibers sourced?
Our Bluefaced Leicester is 100% British. It comes from small farms all over the UK, and is purchased through the British Wool Marketing Board on our behalf. The fibers are then scoured and Superwash-treated in the UK to the highest environmental standards possible.
Our Merino fibers come from various sources (not Australia). We specify that none of our merino fibers are to come from farms practicing mulesing. You can be confident that our Meirno is mulesing-free.
Our non-supewash Merino is Peruvian Merino. This comes from small herds in the mountains where sheep are the livlihood of the shepherds. It is in their interest to look after their livestock carefully in order to receive the highest price possible for the fleece, and to guarantee themselves an income. Our Peruvian mill also provides education programs to help shepherds get the best out of their animals.
Our Superwash Merino comes from Argentina and Uruguay. It is sourced from many farms of varying sizes, from smaller to larger farms.