As for spinning, I had gravitated to something between fine and very fine. Laceweight. Then I bought The Spinner's Book of Yarn Designs by Sarah Anderson, and the newly revived spinning group is inspiring me to experiment and take me out of my comfort zone. So, I have been spinning a spiral yarn, page 112. Thick single plyed with a thin single. See?
The white yarn was spun from a filthy, nasty and free Shetland fleece that I found at Carol Leigh's studio. (I also found indigo and spun linen, for which I paid.)
I learned one good thing about cleaning a dirty fleece, and I'll be damned if I can remember where. The trick is to place the fleece in a large bucket/tub of cold water, no soap, and leave it for several hours or overnight. A lot of the dirt will be extracted, and the water is great for plants. This can be repeated if necessary, then continue with whatever cleaning method you prefer.