Tennessee guilds explore BioFiberSoak with Jennifer Adair

Dec 14, 2012

Jennifer Adair has an article in the Winter 2013 issue of Spin-Off about a fleece-washing method she calls BioFiberSoak. "A New (yet Ancient) Way to Clean a Fleece," explores using a Lactobacillus fermentation bath for wool washing instead of hot water and detergent. As Jennifer collected a variety of wool samples cleaned with BioFiberSoak, she asked several local guilds for help. The Barefoot Spinners and Nashville Spinsters guilds in Tennessee agreed to help Jennifer with some blind fiber taste tests! Guild members were given samples of wools processed with the BioFiberSoak method. Jennifer says, "There were also detergent-scoured samples from each fleece, so spinners could compare the two cleaning processes. Spinners used whatever tools and techniques they preferred, as long as the BFS and detergent-scoured samples were spun with the same methods." All were so engrossed with the samples and results that no one took any pictures! So in November, the Nashville Spinsters reenacted the spinning experiments. Read Jennifer's article in the new Spin-Off to learn more about this method and the results of the guild members' tests.

Fermentation cleaning methods have been of great interest in the last few years. Over 1,500 posts have accumulated on a still active Ravelry thread in the last three years. Follow Jennifer, IndigoKiwi, and many others as they share their evolving experience using these cleaning methods.

Check out Jennifer Adair's website for more information about her work.



Filed under:
Related Posts
+ Add a comment


gazell wrote
on Dec 17, 2012 8:31 PM

I am one of the test spinners on this project. I have cleaned several fleeces using this method and am delighted with the resulting softness of the fleece, and the fresh clean "smell" (no smell)-no odor, no artificial fragrance. Saves water, too.

Sue Gazell

gazell wrote
on Dec 18, 2012 7:14 AM

Forgot to add, I just BioFiberSoaked about 2 pounds of dog hair (husky). No smell.


Kate Larson wrote
on Dec 18, 2012 9:38 AM

Hi Sue!

It is good to hear another firsthand account. I can't wait to try this on one of my Border Leicester fleeces. What type of fleeces have you cleaned so far? And dog fiber—I never thought of that!



gazell wrote
on Dec 18, 2012 8:40 PM

I have cleaned a cotswold, a finn, and a black welsh mountain. The black welsh mountain had been previously, but not thoroughly, scoured. I was hoping the BFS soak would finish it, but the factor here is the grease. BFS will not remove grease, or at least not all of it. The cots and finn were low grease, and they feel really soft and lively, not stripped and dry.