Fiber Arriving At The Mill

You must contact us to schedule your fiber for processing before sending it in-see our Order Forms Page for details
When your fiber arrives at the mill, it will be checked in and weighed and we will review your order. You will then be emailed an invoice for your deposit.
Once the deposit is received your order will be placed in our processing queue. 
Not all fleeces require every step of our processing. We use Stonehedge Mill Equipment.
We DO NOT skirt. The quality of your final product starts with you-all skirting is up to you. We will review each fleece/order to ensure our machine safety.  If you do not want it in your final product, please remove it before you send it-we strongly encourage you to skirt your own fleeces before sending them in.
We, too, raise fiber animals and expect some vegetable matter (VM) in the fiber, but fiber with “a lot” of VM will be an additional fee due to wear and tear of our machines. Fiber with excessive amounts of VM will be refused.
Our Machines
As the fiber tumbles, dirt, vegetation, short cuts and some guard hairs fall out. We tumble fleeces for a minimum of 10 minutes.
Fiber Tumbler to help remove vegetable matter, dust and short and second cuts
We scour and wash all fibers at 125 degrees. (Unless you have sent in pre-washed fiber and it cleared our inspection-then it passes this step.)
Wash tub and sink where fiber is cleaned
Dryer Rack
Once washed, fiber is then placed on the drying racks. 
Dryer rack-shelves for fiber to air dry on
This opens (fluffs) the fiber, and blows it into a catch box. Not all fiber goes into the picker. Finer and longer fibers skip this step.
Fiber in the Picker box after being picked          Picker used to open up fiber
This machine is a modification of the carder, designed to remove heavier, coarser guard hairs and excess vegetation. The waste falls into a catch tray under the machine, while the quality fibers come out in a cloud at the end of the machine. It has a variable speed setting, which are monitored to remove just the amount of waste necessary without losing too much of the good fiber. Not every fleece requires this step and it is completely up to the client if they wish to include this process. For alpaca that requires dehairing, we do not run it through this machine. Due to its fineness, we use the Carder and run the fleece/order through it before completing the regular carding order.
This is the heart of the Mill and all fiber runs through the Carder.
Drawing the fiber through and aligning them in a similar direction to prepare for spinning. At the end of the carder, the fiber is combed off, in the form of a wide web. From there, it can be rolled onto a drum to form a batt, drawn into roving, or spun into rug yarn
18 drum carder
Batt Drum
A batt is a thick soft “blanket” that is created from carding and can be used for felting or spinning
Batt of fiber on the drum at the Carding machine          Batt after being removed from the drum
Your fiber picked open and carded into one low draft, low twist, continuous strand. It can be returned loose in a bag or rolled into a bump.
Brown alpaca roving
Rug Yarn
You can use good quality fiber or that of a lesser grade. These fibers are “wrapped” around a 100% cotton core yarn. Rug yarn can be used for crocheted rugs, a knit throw, etc.
Rug yarn
further processing to produce a lighter-weight sliver. Fibers are drawn into parallel orientation by running the roving through our pin drafter. This is the sliver we use to spin our semi-worsted yarns. Some double-coated fleeces may need an additional pindrafting to thoroughly blend the various lengths of fiber, in order to properly spin on our machines.
-breeds frequently affected and possibly needing an additional run through the pindrafter include, but are not limited to, Icelandic, Shetland, Jacob, karakul and Navajo-Churro. Some blends may also be affected such as wool/silk, wool/mohair, etc.
Roving going into the Pindrafter where the fibers will be aligned          Pindrafted Roving
Assessing your fiber for spinning on our machines includes looking at its length. We can spin lengths from 3-10 inches. Longer than that won’t draft properly, and shorter than that will fall apart in the drafting zone. If I cannot spin your fiber, after it has been processed for spinning, because of its length (short or long), it will be returned to you as pindrafted roving, and charged as such. If I decide before processing that it won’t spin, I will turn the fiber into roving unless you specify otherwise in the “special comments or instructions” section on your order form.
If you want 100% alpaca or llama yarn and specify that no wool can be added for spinning, and I believe I cannot spin it in that condition, I will return it to you as roving and charge you for processing into roving, unless you specify on your order form to send it back raw. If you send your fiber for spinning and I believe that we can not spin it, either because of length or texture, we will automatically add 15 to 30% wool, unless you specify “not” to add wool on your form.
We do not process 100% Suri Alpaca into yarn. All suri alpaca that is sent for spinning will have 30% merino added.
Fiber being spun into singles           Singles on a bobbin waiting to be plied
Twisting together 2 or more single yarns. We can do 2 or 3 ply. If you wish for 4 or more please contact us to discuss.
Coning and Skeining-
Your yarn can be put into skeins or on cones. Our standard skeins are 200 yps unless otherwise requested.
This is where the singles will be plied           2 ply alpaca yarn
-size? Thickness? Needle felted. Weights-light, medium and heavy
Needle Felter          Batt of fiber coming through the needle felter
Blending: We can custom blend your projects, using fiber you provide, or fiber that you purchase from us. We can run complementary colors and fibers side by side through the carder for striped roving or work to achieve a more homogenous blend by blending at the picker. An addition option for adding some color is Sari Silk (we cannot guarantee what color we can order as it varies) or to ply with embroidery thread. We can also spin up to 1 pound of solid colored merino tops and ply 2 strands your fiber plus 1 strand colored merino for a 3 ply