Waste Fleece? No Problem

When processing locks or raw fleece, you can end up with a lot of waste fiber. There are actually many uses for waste wools that don’t involve pitching it in the trash! The level of cleanliness is going to make a big impact on what you can do with those waste fibers and we have some listed here, but feel free to experiment and see what else you can come up with! Wool is so diverse as a natural resource and there are few limits to its applications and reuse.

The Black pieces in this weaving are waste Finn wool from hand combing

Clean wool of course has loads more uses than dirty. Waste from carding can be carded again, felted, or spun directly into yarn for chunky textures. The little short ends and knots that come off your wool combs make excellent stuffing for projects or as shown above, I have made some hand twisted bits to include in a weaving. You can also hand card your combing waste to reclaim some of the longer, spinnable fibers that can be left behind. If you come across locks that are too short for spinning in your fleece, that can be some excellent felting wool, too! Some people are working towards more sustainable wool use practices such as building insulation or compressed pellets for soil improvement in gardens.

And speaking of gardening, we cannot understate the use of dirty fleece parts. It is an amazing natural mulch, compost fodder, and garden bed primer. Wool will decompose in 1-4 months in the elements. It acts as a natural slow-release fertilizer, breaking down into elements like nitrogen, iron, carbon, magnesium, and sulphur which aids plant growth. It is naturally repellent to some pests and when buried, adds to soil aeration as well. This absolutely applies to your scour water as well! We put all of the water from washing fleece directly into our garden beds and we have never had such abundant plant life.

What other uses can you think of for waste wools?

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