How to Wash Fleece: how_wash_fleece

Although a fleece can be spun ‘in the grease’, many times it is desirable to wash or scour it before handspinning.

Difficulty Level:


Time Required:

5 hours

Here’s How:

  1. Remove vegetable matter, clumps of dirt, or other soiled fibre from the fleece.
  2. Fill a large tub or wash basin with hot water.
  3. Add a mild soap to the hot water, such as dishwashing liquid or liquid detergent (no bleach).
  4. Place the fleece in the hot water.
  5. Allow the fleece to soak for several hours, or overnight.
  6. The lanolins and oils will soak out into the water.
  7. Drain the water and remove the fleece from the wash tub.
  8. Refill the tub with cool water and place the fleece back in to rinse.
  9. If the fleece is especially dirty, the above steps may need to be repeated.
  10. Spin the fleece dry to remove excess water, by using the Spin cycle of your washing machine.
  11. Lay the washed fleece on a flat surface or drying rack to dry.


  1. Caution: On Step 10 above – Turn off the water to your washing machine, so that the fleece is not sprayed during the Spin cycle.
  2. Do not agitate the fleece while it is soaking, or you may get felt.
  3. If you are going to dye fleece, it must be clean prior to dyeing. Otherwise, you will be dyeing the lanolin and oils and not the fibre.

  4. How To

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    How to Mordant Cotton and Linen Yarns
    How to Sew Handwoven Fabric
    How to Spin a Cabled Yarn
    How to Make a Tin Mordant
    How to Make a Twisted Fringe
    How to Use a Corker
    How to Wash Fleece
    How to Felt