Chiengora (dog hair) Lacy’s Shawl

Posted by Tropical Twister under Articles , Chiengora , Knitting , Knitting Projects , Projects , Spinning , Techniques 
[7] Comments 

Finished (Chiengora article 3 of 4 )

First the finished shawl was soaked in “Soak”, rinsed, soaked again, rinsed, and then soaked in Ikaria deodorizing pet shampoo, rinsed and spun dry in non-agitating front loading washer.  The completed shawl had been placed in a net laundry bag before being placed in the washer.  The water temperature throughout was “cold”, that is, straight from the tap which in Florida in the summer is room temperature not really “cold”.  Even wet through, there was no doggy odor (thank goodness).  Then the damp shawl was blocked by laying it out on the living room floor and coaxing it into shape and then left to dry flat.

The fiber was harvested over the past year and spun at different times.  Some was spun quite thin (lace weight) and other thicker (sport weight).  Using the different weights as bands creates interest, one of those serendipity things.  (If one chose to lessen the effect, the yarn could be used in progressively heavier or lighter weights to lessen the contrast moving from weight to another or one could be more technical and record settings and thickness each time they sat to spin.  Thereby having greater consistency.  Me, I just like to spin.)   On Shasta Daisy’s blog  she reports her dog, Princess Vanity, provides different fiber in the spring than in the autum shed.  Something to consider.  I’ve just gathered and co-mingled my “harvests” in the past, but from this point forward I plan to be more mindful of the seasons.

FINISHED So soft …






I’m not sure which is harder to photograph, a black shawl or a black dog.  (I put a white t-shirt under the shawl to better photograph the lace.)

Thank you for visiting

Tropical Twister


7 Responses to “Chiengora (dog hair) Lacy’s Shawl”

  1. Leesy says, August 31st, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    Lovely! Enjoy wearing it. I’m sure you’ll smile every time.

  2. freshisle says, September 1st, 2008 at 7:28 am

    Lacy is an almost twin to our Shadow! I’ve always been reluctant to spin his hair because I’ve read that the doggy smell never leaves the yarn. Is that true?

  3. Tropical Twister says, September 1st, 2008 at 10:26 am

    Wish the net had smell-o-vision so you could sniff. No doggy odor. Because she is an office dog, I bath Lacy every one to two weeks with mild herbal dog shampoo. So, she is basically a pretty clean dog. BUT, she can smell. Most of her shampoos are initiated after my husband declares “that dog really stinks”. I spun the hair as from the dog (spinners talk about spinning wool in the grease, with the lanolin in … this is the same but with doggy oils instead of lanolin). It took three soaks for the water to rinse completely clear. But, no smell, even wet. Now I am a dog person and we have a home in which a dog resides so the discriminating sniffer may catch a wiff of dog … I certainly don’t … no more than I smell sheep (and sheep can smell) when I wash a wool sweater, rabbit when I wash angora, or goat when I wash mohair. I fear stinky dog “wool” is an urban myth, probably started by cats.

  4. Leigh Dudenhoeffer says, September 1st, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    WOW!!! I’ve collected a ton of border collie fiber from a friend (King) of mine over the past 3 years and I was wondering what to make with it. I find it interesting that Lacy’s fiber needed to be blended with wool. King’s hair is pretty soft and has a staple length of 5+ inches. Would you still recommend blending it?

    Thank you for the shawl idea. I think there’s enough of it there to do one.

    I’m also working on a commissioned project involving a lot of St. Bernard hair, but I cannot publish that stuff to the web because I’m aspiring to enter the project in one of the spinning or weaving magazines. (I hope.)

    Also, thank you for mentioning my blog in yours. I’ve added your comment to my posting about Princess Vanity and have very much enjoyed seeing your website.
    Leigh MacD

    P.S. I’m interested in your knitting pattern for the finished shawl.

  5. Tropical Twister says, September 1st, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    Dogs & spinning…does it get any better? I have had a number of questions (private posts) and will provide more info in upcoming chiengora post, chiengora 4 of 3 (LOL).
    Tropical Twister

  6. Cherri Hankins says, September 7th, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Only today, did I find an e-mail you sent me in Aug. I’m sorry I didn’t respond. Your article is good, and your shawl is very pretty.
    Chiengora may be my favorite fiber. (not really, whatever is in my hand, is generally my favorite)

  7. Natalie says, September 9th, 2008 at 9:02 am

    I just think it’s too awesome that you spun and knit a shawl out of dog hair!! I’m sure I could do the same with my golden!! She’s got great hair. Will have to work on that so I have some when I get a wheel!! That is pretty neat about the seasons changing the fiber you get. Will have to consider that. Thanks for sharing!! Lacy is so adorable!!

    PS…I totally understand about taking pictures of black dogs. jackjack is hard to picture but when you get a good one he’s SO cute!!!

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