Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A New Addition to our Homestead!

A homestead isn’t complete without a fiber producing animal. For an urban area, Angora rabbits are just the answer. They are small, quiet, and can be kept inside if desired. There is more information online if you would like to read more about Angora rabbits.

Eric and I began talking about angora rabbits only about a week ago. It was one of those conversations that was half jokingly and half seriously about buying rabbits. The topic was on our minds so we began reading and watching videos about raising angora rabbits. One night I decided to search craiglist to find out how much Angora rabbits would cost. I happened to find a person selling two rabbits that lived nearby. By the next day Eric and I were holding two adorable bunnies in our laps at home. Within a week we went from joking about rabbits to owning rabbits.

Mittens and Socks are still too young to produce wool yet. In the meantime, I am trying to find someplace that will teach me how to spin wool. I can start with an affordable drop spindle and then move to a spinning wheel. Angora wool is nice because it doesn’t have to be treated much before it is spun. I’ve seen videos of people pulling the hair off the rabbit in their lap and placing it right into the spinning wheel! I can’t wait until I make my first garment with angora fiber!



  1. I've been looking into getting rabbits also. I took a spinning lesson first to see if it was something I could handle because I'm not too coordinated. Walking, talking and chewing gum simultaneously is a problem. My first time trying, I spun a two ply 30 ft piece of Leicester wool. I learned on an electric wheel which was incredibly easy. I'm going to try again on a drop spindle.
    What variety of angora did you get? I hear some of them have more guard hairs than others? or are more prone to wool block. I've been leaning toward French angora. Even if you don't take up spinning, I saw at the county fair this week, the fiber was selling for $12-18 per ounce. I have no idea how much fiber a rabbit produces. Have you sheard them yet?

  2. I'm in the process of finally setting up a spinning class with an instructor. I got a drop spindle, but haven't had any success yet on my own. We got two French Angoras and I've sheared them twice already. But their hair seems to be growing at different speeds because the second shearing I only got long hair in certain spots. I wanted to sell the hair, but I messed up the first batch by mixing long hairs with short hairs....so maybe next time if I'm not spinning by them.

    The rabbits are a lot of work to take care of. We are having problems with hair collecting on the sides of cage and clogging the bottom of the cage. I just have to clean the cage more often.