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Power Scour Review from Jessie At Home

Hello lovely readers! Back in March a review of Power Scour was posted on JessieAtHome.com. It was quite a thorough review!

Don't cry over spilled wine

For the review, Jessie spilled wine, oil, tea, and coffee on swatches of various fibres. She then used Power Scour to remove the stains, with great success. You can read all about the process over on Jessie’s blog post, HERE.

While we are on the subject of happy Unicorn users, do you have a great Unicorn product story? We would love to share some of your stories, tips, and tricks on the blog in July. If you have a story, pop on over to THIS Ravelry post in our group and share your story. You can also share your story as a comment on this post. Be sure to sign your comment with your name as you would like it to appear in the blog post. If you have a website, share that as well so we can link it if we use your comment.

Power Scour to the rescue!

Power Scour to the rescue!

Have you ever had to demote one of your favorite items of clothing to “housecleaning attire” thanks to a stain? I sure have. Specifically a comfy summer dress and a nice cream tunic. I’ve worn and washed both items many times since the stains happened, but just around the house. Earlier this month, I had an epiphany: Power Scour might be able to fix them!!

Let me show you. Here is the dress. I think those are cooking oil stains, but I’m not too sure. When I wear it, they are really obvious.

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Now the cream tunic. There is a tiny dot that sometimes looks like a shadow, but other times, depending on the light, it is really obvious and embarrassing.

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Both of these stained garments have been washed and dried with their stains many times. However, I had faith. So I put some Power Scour directly on the stains and rubbed it in a bit. I then filled a bowl with hot water and more Power Scour and let them soak for about half an hour.

Next I simply ran them through the washer and dryer and thought happy thoughts. Can you guess what happened?

All clean!!!! I promise that’s the same dress, it’s just the light change from taking the photo later in the day that caused the color to look different.

I went to a conference last week and I wore the tunic. I wore the dress to the grocery store yesterday. I am a happy camper!

So, take a look in your closet, maybe you have some clothing that you can give new life to with Power Scour.

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Would you like a chance to win a set of Fibre Wash, Fibre Rinse, and Power Scour, along with an adorable plus baby unicorn named Blossom? Well, hop on over to Jessie At Home and enter her giveaway – CLICK HERE. Good luck!

Fleece Washing Time!

It may seem a little strange, but I love to wash fleece. Well, depending on who is reading this, maybe it does not seem so strange, but in my little circle of fibery friends, I do not know anyone else who does this for fun. It all started in 2010, when I went to my first Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. I was set up in a corner of Gail and Jim White’s Ozark Carding Mill booth (I wonder if Gail and Jim have retired–their site is not up,) helping sell Unicorn Fibre Products, while they sold their gorgeous fiber and yarn, and took fleeces back to process at their mill.

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I had used Unicorn Fibre Wash and Rinse to wash, block, and freshen knitted and crocheted FOs, and even to set my beginner handspun skeins. But when it came to Power Scour, I was relying on Gail’s expertise and the testimonials of other fiber processors, which I incorporated into my sales spiel. While they all raved about the performance of Power Scour, I felt a little left out, and thought it would make more sense if I personally knew what I was talking about. So I decided to buy a fleece from the booth next door to Gail’s, so I could test the product on my own. Must have been the wool fumes! I figured I would wash a pound or so and then send the rest off for processing. Little did I know that this would turn into an addiction source of such enjoyment. My first fleece was a large and quite greasy Romney, and I washed all 8 pounds of it in my back yard! My obsession began. I repeated the buy a fleece and wash it cycle for several more wool festivals. I’m still not sure why I love it so much, and my neighbors are not sure what to make of it either. It must be just a function of being outside on an nice day and doing something by hand. All you makers and growers know what I mean, right?

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These days, I have a No Fleece Buying rule for when I go to festivals, since I have several clean fleeces and have not done much with them. My plan for this year’s Spinzilla is to make a good dent in my clean fleece stash and card and spin up as much as possible, so I figured I should make sure all of my fleece is at least washed. I knew I had one that I had not scoured yet. It wasn’t the one I thought, and I honestly can’t eremember what kind of fleece it is. I know I have bought romney, romney-bond, shetland, coopworth lamb, cvm ram and I think that is it. All I can say about this one is that it is a nice chocolatey brown and it has been in the garage and I may have scored it at Wisconsin Sheep and Wool a few years ago. It could be part of the romney-bond, which was, as I recall, a biggie.

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A little VM, but otherwise, a nice looking fluffy fleece, and none the worse for aging in my garage for a while

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I’ve been meaning to wash this since the weather warmed up this spring, but somehow did not get around to it till now. It rained where I live all of June and some of July, and then I’ve been busy with my local community garden. But then there came a nice sunny Friday morning, and I couldn’t wait any longer.

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Like many of my product demo posts, this one involves my doing some cleaning first, in this case my many plastic buckets, and food. Here is my squash haul from the home garden so far this year.

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Whereas in the past I have “meticulously” laid locks with tips and cut ends oriented carefully and nestled in tulle envelopes for washing, this time I could not be bothered to find and use all of that stuff.

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A couple years ago my husband strongly suggested I put things in the attic that I am not currently using. I know, right? So it is more of a chore to go up there and get things that I “need.” So for this episode of fleece washing, we are going pretty low tech.

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I start with the hottest water out of my kitchen sink tap, about 130-140 degrees. I am pretty conservative with my use of the Unicorn power scour and Fibre Rinse.

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For the first wash, I start with about a teaspoon in 4 gallons of water, and probably a half pound of dirty fleece. It sits, with just a little gentle swishing, for about 20 minutes.

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Here is the water after the first wash.

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Each batch then gets removed and placed in a colander I just use for fleece, and the dirty water gets poured right into the garden, once it has cooled.

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I only pour it on the flowers and the fruiting plants, not on the greens or root crops. For the second wash, I use the same amount of water, but less Power Scour, about 1/2 teaspoon. Because I am doing this by hand and not in the machine, I can judge how much product and soak time I think each pile of fleece needs.

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Here’s the water after the second wash. You can see that most of the “stuff” (lanolin and farm dirt) came out in the first go-round. So there is really no reason to go heavy-handed with the product. You can experiment on your own, since every fleece will be different and water is not the same everywhere either.

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I like to keep the suds low, because even though I am reusing the water, the second half of my summer got so hot and dry that I am more conscious of my water use, and less suds means less rinsing.

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The next step is a Fibre Rinse soak.

Here is the water afterwards.

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For this I use slightly cooler, warm, not hot water, and one squirt in each bucket is fine. If I have a really dirty fleece, sometimes I will repeat this, but this guy is not too bad, and so the last step is a clear warm water soak.

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Then I go find my drying racks. In past years I have used our lawn furniture. but my husband is not a big fan of that, so now I have collected more appropriate materials, including my homemade fleece/sweater/garlic drying rack.

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Hot and dry weather is just the ticket for drying wet wool, and my blobs of clean fleece were good to go by the end of the afternoon. You may notice my garden is a little jungly. That’s August for you!

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If you have never hand washed a fleece, why not try it before this summer is over? I am curious how much of this I will be able to process and spin, and how much yarn will come out of it. A sweater’s worth? I have never spun for a sweater before, but maybe this is my year. Spinzilla is a great week-long spinning challenge, and Unicorn Fibre has been a sponsor for the last two years. Spinner registration starts tomorrow, so jump on board! The collective goal is to spin enough to stretch around the globe, and your personal goal is whatever you want it to be!

Now, up to the attic to find my hand cards!

Spinzilla Readiness Kit from Unicorn Fibre!

Spinzilla_editedHey Spinners–Have you all heard about Spinzilla, a handspinning competition/fundraiser that is in its 3rd year? The goal is to spin as much as you can during the competition week, but there is no reason not to start preparing now.

That is why we are offering the first of several Spinzilla Specials we will offer during our second year of Merino Sponsorship…The Spinzilla Readiness Kit!

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Perhaps your goal for Spinzilla 2015 is to spin a fleece (or two!) First, scour your locks with Unicorn Power Scour, then make them spin more smoothly by adding a dab of Unicorn Fibre Rinse as you spin.

Spinzilla readiness kit

The kit gives you 16 oz of each product, which is enough for several fleeces, and a mesh bag for a better process. More careful processing = faster spinning!

Stock up for yourself, or go in with a Spinzilla teammate to save on shipping and also get $5 off any order over $50 with discount code UF5.

Stay tuned for more specials and crank up those wheels and spindles!

Fantastic Side-by-Side Product Test for Washing Fleece!

Here is a really excellent Blog post by Marie Spaulding, where she washes fleece in various scouring products including her first experience with Beyond Clean, our scentless version that is great for soiled baby clothing as well as dirty wool locks.

Thanks, Marie, for the terrific work, and for sharing it with us!

This has me really itching to wash a fleece I have stashed away–stay tuned!

More Experiments!

People are always doing good side by side comparisons using Unicorn Fibre Products. Here are a few recent ones!

A very thorough video from FluffyReviews with Unicorn Power Scour vs another wool wash on a gorgeous Cormo Fleece.

There are many washed lock photos on our Facebook page!

Thanks everyone, for putting our Unicorn Fibre products to the test and sharing the results!

Meet Our Unicorn Dealers–Camaj Fiber Arts!

Meet Our Unicorn Dealers–Camaj Fiber Arts!

It was my great pleasure to interview Mary Egbert from Camaj Fiber Arts. Even more so since she and I have met in person on a few occasions at the TNNA trade shows. And, she sent us a wonderful entry for our video and blog post contest a while back. Also, her products are BEAUTIFUL!

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Unicorn Fibre: Hi Mary, how goes it? Even thought we’ve met, I don’t know the backstory of your company, so this is a nice treat. Please tell me and our readers a little bit about how you got started.

Mary Egbert: We raised alpacas back in 2005 when we lived in Utah. I knew nothing about the fiber end of things and read every book and watched every video that was out there re: hand processing fleece, dyeing and spinning. I started washing fiber long before I spun. I bought my first wheel , a Louet S10, and it sat In the corner intimidating me for a year. Then I took the plunge and loved it! I took my first spinning class with Jacey Boggs in 2013.

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UF: Fun! I resisted spinning for a while too, but it eventually sucked me in! Looks like you have a lot going on right now. I just realized you included Unicorn Power Scour and Fibre Rinse with your Raw Lock Box and we have been a monthly sponsor of your Spinning Box. I bet a lot of spinners would like to get their hands on your next offerings. How can people find you?

raw lock box

ME: A lot of ways! Here are all of our links.

The Camaj Fiber Arts Facebook Page

The Spinning Box Facebook Page

Our Blog

The Camaj Fiber Arts Website

The Spinning Box Website

UF: Wow! That is a lot of great stuff you have to offer! How do most people find their way to you?

ME: They find me through Facebook , You Tube videos, my website and Etsy. I do a few festivals a year so I can meet my customers face to face. It’s nice to meet people that I have developed a relationship with online.

UF: What are some of your favorite products and your bestsellers?

ME: My favorite products are all of them! I love everything I sell or I would not sell it. Everything I sell I have sampled and/or used so I can experience the product and pass along that information to my customer. If I don’t love it I know my customer won’t either. My best selling item is Soffsilk®, but the Spinning Box is gaining speed.

UF: What is the most surprising thing that has happened in your business?

ME: It surprises me how many people watch my videos and the positive impact that has had on my business. It really is fun getting a message from someone that said I taught them how to spin or I they learned how to dye fiber from watching my videos. It makes me feel like I’m giving back to the community and sharing what I know.

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UF: You are a wonderfully supportive Unicorn Fibre dealer. How did you learn about Unicorn Fibre products?

ME: Through my tenacious research during my start up days when I was hand washing alpaca. It was, and still is, one of my favorite fiber soaps.

UF: I have to admit, I love washing a raw fleece and I will be starting up with that soon, maybe our next nice, dry day. What is your favorite thing to do outside of work?

ME: Going to the beach and dancing. Not at the same time of course. Oh and being with my family, especially my grandchildren…all six of them. They are my heart.

UF: That is sweet. I bet they have fun when they see you. What is your favorite craft and who taught you to do it?

ME: Well my very first craft was sewing. My mother and grandmother were tailor quality sewers and they taught me a lot. I did that for a very long time and made clothes and toys for my kids. Once I got the taste of fiber arts and spinning yarn, sewing took a back seat.

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UF: I know how that goes. I just got back into crochet and hand sewing clothes, after a long time where knitting and spinning were center stage. So many crafts, so little time! What is your typical workday like?

ME: Up at 7…coffee…computer time to check/answer emails and orders…pack orders..design cards, adverts, or things for the Spinning Box….play on FB for a little while talking to friends and customers. Walk the dogs…check emails again. Some days I dye fibers or spin or do vids for You Tube. I babysit my twin grandsons a bit during the week too. I have a busy, full, wonderful life.

UF: Sounds like a lot of fun. What advice do you wish you could give yourself when you first got started?

ME: Why didn’t you do this years ago??!! I take that back, I have always had the entrepreneurial spirit, hunger for knowledge, am a great researcher and have flung lots of things at the wall and this has stuck and I love doing it!

sample batt spun colage

UF: You obviously have passion for what you are doing and a great attitude! What is your favorite quote or saying?

ME: I have a couple.

If you have not failed you never tried
Every great journey begins with a small step
Life is not about finding yourself, life is about creating yourself
Believe and act as if it were impossible to fail.

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UF: Mary, thanks for a wonderful interview. Is there anything else you would like to add?

ME: I can’t thank Unicorn enough for your support to my little biz. I will always be a great supporter of Unicorn as well.

UF: Aww, thanks! Hope to see you soon in the real world!

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