Hi! I thought I would share my current methods for washing fleeces, so you can see what goes into it.
Now, there are two schools of thought on fleece washing, at least! There’s the “blue dish soap” method, complete with several rinse soak times. This is usually what I do and I find that it gets the fleece quite clean. The other method of fleece washing that I sometimes use is the BioFiber Soak method. I find that I generally only need to employ this additional step for very greasy fleeces. The photos below were taken on 8/22/14 and show the process of cleaning a fleece in my kitchen, which is where it usually happens.
First, fill basin with hot water, then add soap, you do not want soap suds here! Then separate a section off of your fleece and gently push it under the water. Let soak for 30-60 minutes.
Gently remove fleece from now-dirty water, and squeeze out as much dirty water as you can. Set the wet fleece aside for a moment.
The water will be quite dirty most likely. Rinse the wash basin and fill again with hot water. No soap this time, we’re rinsing now.
Once basin is full enough, add wet fleece and push under water again. Be gentle, we don’t want felting to happen. Let soak for another 30-60 minutes. Repeat rinse cycle for as many times as necessary to get clean water and clean fleece.
Take your fleece to a warm dry area, preferably outside where it can drip and the water won’t hurt anything. I have some sawhorses with support boards and lattice over them, but many people use window screens to dry their fleece.
Once dry I can proceed to dye! Look for a dyeing page soon.