Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Wearing your dog?

On chilly days it's pleasant to curl up next to a dog. They're like furry hot water bottles! Some have more hair than others, of course, and at times when I brush my dogs I think, "It would be cool to use all this fluff for something." It's possible. 

Brushed out hair from dogs and cats can be washed and spun into yarn, that in turn can become sweaters, mittens, and hats. Some people who work with spinning yarn from dog hair even work with clipped hair from breeds like poodles, provided it's long enough.
Image from hundegarn.com.
Socks made by wool from
an Old English Sheepdog.
The yarn can be used with the color it has, or be colored.

Before I tell you more, I want to point out that we are in no way affiliated with the websites mentioned below. I don't know anything about their products or services, but I want to mention my sources and give credit for photos and creativity.  

I read a Norwegian website called hundegarn.com, and they advice not to wash the brushed out hair. They say it should be stored dry and well ventilated in a paper bag, not plastic.

The website customdoghairspinning.com says the hair should be at least 2" long. They handspin the wool on a spinning wheel and the end product is yarn suitable for knitting, crocheting, and weaving. They also point out that the finished product will not smell like dog if it gets wet.

Some spinners offer to work with wool shorter than 2", but in that case it might have to be mixed with another type of wool. 

It's possible to make the yarn on one's own as well. I have never attempted spinning and wouldn't know where to start, but Wikihow has an article on the subject.

Image from customdoghairspinning.com

The yarn on this photo comes from a Golden Retriever.

Yarn from a Golden Retriever.
Image from hundegarn.com

Yarn from a Border Collie.
Image from hundegarn.com

I haven't knitted for over a decade, but the idea of making something from my fur kids is appealing. I know how to knit, I just don't usually do it. Might be time to start saving all the stuff I brush out.

What do you think? Would you wear a sweater with yarn from your dog?

~ Maria Sadowski ~


2 comments:

  1. We could make probably one sweater a week from Katie's hair as she sheds so much! It is an interesting idea, but what happens when it gets wet and you smell like a wet dog? My fur is too short. I don't think Mom will ever do it, but it is something she talks about now and then.

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    1. Haha, I wouldn't want to go around smelling like a wet dog. From what I understand, the smell comes from oils on the dog's skin, and once the wool is washed, it won't smell like wet dog. =D

      Katie is big, I bet you'd get enough for a sweater in no time! =D

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