Yesterday afternoon I had one of those "oops" moments.
I spent the day dyeing the Gradient Club fibre so I could get it sent out before I stopped work for Christmas. All went swimmingly well, but at 11pm last night I had a sudden realisation...
I'd left one last tray of fibre in the oven for another 15 minutes to finish setting the dye... and I'd not taken it out of the oven. When I dashed over to the caravan thankfully there were no flames, but the place was filled with smoke. I turned the oven off, opened the doors and windows, and went back to bed. Everything usually seems better in the cold light of day!
This morning I've gone through all the fibres I store in the caravan. Thankfully it's an awful lot emptier than it would have been during the summer. The only fibre stored in there at the moment is the undyed stock, and the extra blended top for Nordic, Ceilidh and Hiraeth. All of the fibre that's currently for sale online is stored in my house and is perfectly safe, as is the caravan and everything else stored inside it.
Every bag that was partly open has unfortunately picked up the smell of the smoke. It's not a horribly bad smokey smell (think burned hair rather than burning plastic), but is still a bit pongy. If it was high summer I might try airing things out, but it's not, it's winter, and I have nowhere to spread out this much fibre.
The undyed bases will be fine. Before I dye them they're soaked in water, then they're socked in dye stock. Once they're dyed, they're washed in hot water with detergent, before being rinsed again, plus nearly all of those bags were still sealed.
However, I have got a lot of blended top that is perfectly fine to spin, so long as you can put up with a slight smoky aroma, so I'm going to have a Yule Log Sale!
Purely for the educational value, this is what BFL top looks like when you cook it for 7 hours... the water is from the rain we had overnight, inside those sausages of clingfilm was a beautiful carbonised honeycomb.
All the smoke damaged stock is going to be 50% off, which I hope is enough of a discount to entice some of you to give it a new home.
If you do decide to buy some then there's a few things to do to get rid of the smoky scent. If you hang the fibre in an out of the way, well ventilated spot for a couple of weeks that will help. You can also try popping it in a sealed box with a tub of bicarbonate of soda to absorb the smell.
You can also wash it, which really isn't as scary as it might sound, all the dyed top you buy from me has effectively been washed.
I thought it might be helpful to do some step by step photos. In short, you won't felt it unless you change the temperature of your water, or are too rough with the fibre, but gentle squeezing is fine., you actually have to try very hard to make felt!