Hi JillB. !
I feel like I’ve passed initiation into some sort of special club. I actually, finally finished spinning the Loch Ness Sheep to Shoe kit you got me from Blue Moon Fiber Arts at Oregon Flock and Fiber last year. And when I say finished, I mean finished, like I soaked it and gave it a good harsh beating too. Tah Dah!…
I’m so glad I did because it really bloomed nicely. You know how I was worried that I was spinning too finely and that I was thinking that I might only be able to use the yarn for a lace project even though I really was trying so hard to spin for socks. Well, by sight, the yarn still falls into the arena of light fingering, but my best guess is that I’ll get something in the area of 9sts/inch on size 0 needles without too much fuss. (Why is gauge such a mystery? I can’t fathom how people get 8 sts/inch on size 1 needles and I can barely get it on zeros knitting as tight as I can! But I digress…) Let’s just look at the pretty process pictures, shall we…
In roving form
On the wheel
Finished singles (with my friend AJ’s Lab/Rott mix, Bella. What A Sweetie Pie!)
Plying (Don’t you love the spice jar shaker cap trick? It makes the plies line up together in a nice orderly manner!)
The niddy-noddy nearly killed me. I actually screwed it up and had to start over three times and narrowly avoided loosing my mind in a giant tangled mess!
The tamed beast… all 750 yards of her.
I’m hoping I can get two pairs of socks out of this, but I’m not married to the idea. I think the first 100 yards or so has fairly regular color repeats, but then switches to barber pole the rest of the way. I’d be pretty impressed if someone could actually spin up this whole kit and get the colors to stay together. I might have to put aside the non-barber pole section for heels and toes or something like that otherwise I’ll get completely unmatched pairs. I must say, I’m quite pleased with myself. It was a big accomplishment in my book to conqueror this mountain of fiber. I am happy with the results.
In other spinning news.. I was taken by the impulse a few weeks ago to dye up some superwash merino for a simple hat. It might have had something to do with the six, totally full bottles of newly prepared dye solution in my fridge (Darn, where’s that pic!) In less than two hours, between work and dinnertime, I had two ounces of richly variegated dark blue/navy roving.
I thought that would be enough to spin up a worsted weight two-ply for a simple but interesting pattern like this one, but let me tell you something. If you eve want to spin bulky, just spin 750 yards of laceweight three-ply and then jump right in to eagerly spinning worsted weight using long draw. I was so afraid of spinning too thin that I ended up with some pretty lofty yarn. I think if I had just stuck with short draw, I would have ended up with something with a tighter twist and less poof and hopefully more yardage.
What I do have here is 90ish yards that represents my pure unadulterated excitement about spinning bigger yarn. Which is O.K. I just need to find a pattern for it and probably some more yarn to make up the the additional needed yardage. Any thoughts? I could dye up some more fiber to compliment it… Also I do have some nice greenish handspun that’s almost the same weight that looks good with it. My only concern is that it’s not superwash. Do you think that matters? I don’t have an individual photo of it, but you can see a fairly good representation of it on the bottom rung of this drying rack.
I’m playing with the Brentwood Symphony this weekend, (3pm on Sunday at Paul Revere Middle School on Allenford just north of San Vicente in Brentwood. It’s free!) We’re doing a bunch of Leroy Anderson pieces and the Grieg Piano Concerto. It’s actually a nice program and Richard Kaufman is conducting. He’s a great guy and has worked with groups like Chicago Symphony and Dallas Symphony. Ooh, I also just found out that David Shostac is going to be sitting in on principal flute. I love playing with him! It should be fun. Must go dig out some good reeds!
Have a great weekend all!
xo, Jill P.