Sunday, March 31, 2013

Spinning 1, 2, 3

It's been a while since I blogged with any regularity but a new blog to document my spinning seems like a good idea.

After purchasing my wheel in January 2013 I sent Dawn at Dawning Dreams an email requesting two bats, one representing water - one representing fire.  
The first bat I chose was the lovely blues - and to be honest I spun it and promptly put it in a bag and have misplaced it somewhere in my stash (not that my stash is all that big - it's just that most of it is  stuffed in a closet). They say never knit with your first handspun. I'm not sure why this is but I'm okay with that. It was bulky and quite thick and thin.

My second attempt was from very nice Poleworth roving that was gifted to me by the fine ladies at Sky Loom Weavers from whom I purchased my wheel. Peggy and Penny were so very patient with me when I was test driving their wheels. Peggy even carted in one of her personal wheels for me to try.

My second yarn rendered a smaller gauge - more of a worsted weight. I decided to knit a hat from it, but hated the finished hat and tossed it in the stash. The yarn was lovely despite the hideousness of the hat. I've never been good at hats. My head must be abnormally small because my attempts at knitting hats yield nothing that fits. I love wearing hats - I just stink at knitting them.

Which brings me to my third spinning experience. For this I returned to the remaining bat from Dawn. Generally I am a lace knitter so I was hoping with this bat to not only get a more consistent gauge of yarn but to get a finer weight as well.

The bat weighed 185 grams and with plying I have approximately 236 yards of mostly fingering - some sport weight yarn. The tag says Merino, Corriedale, and mixed-breed wool.

What I did know to do this time around was to separate my batt so I could ply it to have a nice progression of color from gold to orange to red to brown. There's still plenty of barber poling, which I think looks great and helps ease the progression.

click the photo to enlarge

What I didn't take the time to do - again - was photograph the bat before I began spinning. The spinning is still so new and exciting that I can't help tearing into the bag and jumping feet first into spinning. I assume I'll get more patient, or at least patient enough to photograph the bat or roving first.

This yarn has already spoken that it would like to become a Monarch Shawl.  I designed the Monarch some time ago but it's Spring and I'm already enjoying the few butterflies that flit around on our farm.

The only downside I see to picking out a pattern for the yarn as it was being spun is that I have to wind the yarn soon. It's so pretty in the skein that I will likely hesitate doing that for a few more days.