Dread woolie making—easy concept, difficult application.

Hey, wool dreads, that’s easy! Rip, split, roll, done. I can do that!

Oh, grasshopper, it’s not so easy. Yes, those are the basic steps, but that “roll” bit can be a bitter bitch to get through if you’re doing it right. Remember there’s hot hot, soapy water involved that will inevitably get everywhere as you move the sopping wet wool from the pot to the rolling surface. Then the rolling surface will get sopping wet as well and the water will fling everywhere as you roll if you’re pushing hard enough. Keeping your hands in soapy, hot water that long leads to major skin dehydration as well. And of course, the sore hands! Pushing and pushing and pushing while rolling again and again can cause some serious pain in the fingers, palms, and arms, even shoulders. And if you’re only doing this basic technique with solid colors, you’ll wind up with basic solid color stick dreads—want neat effects like wraps and sparkle and swirls and transitions? Even more hard work must be put into each dread.

So yeah, it may sound easier than synth dreads, but it’s still not easy. The best part about wool dread making is no specialty tools. Just wool, hot water, soap, and your hands. Keep rolling y’all!


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