Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'm learning to spin, slowly.

Since I actually do more stuff than just knit, I figured I should take one day a week for all the other crafts. This week, I have a new thing I'm : SPINNING!

I was sick most of last week, and didn't feel up to playing with my wonderful Maine Woods Yarn & Fiber spindle kit.

Their very lovely photo

My less than lovely photo

Eventually, though, I got up the strength to spin up and ply the very smallest natural-colored batt.

My first single!!

I remembered most of what I got shown at the one and only spin-in I was able to get to, so, within about two hours, I had spun and plied everything. Here are shots of everything:

My first plied yarn

What was left of the longer ply,
folded back on itself.
I've bought stuff that looks like this to knit with,
and have a sweater made of it!

I learned quite a bit, too, though. First, remember which direction you're spinning. I managed to remember that you spin one way to make strands, and the opposite direction to ply. As near as I can tell, I twisted mostly clockwise... but some counterclockwise for the stranding. This resulted in some pretty loose yarn with a tight yarn wrapped around it. While it's an interesting effect, it's not what I was going for just here.

Second, pre-drafting is key. I really needed one hand for the spindle, and two for the drafting. I can see why people get spinning wheels! Getting everything drafted out nice and even results in nice, even yarn. I need a lot more practice, but it's getting there.

Third, over-twisting is gonna cause trouble later on, like you wouldn't believe. I definitely put too much twist in my first batch of yarn, which made plying quite the adventure.

So, the next batch, which will be a nice avocado green, will be (a) pre-drafted very carefully, (b) twisted clockwise the whole time and (c) not over-twisted. We'll see how that goes when I do it!


  1. Good going. I have some of that too!Keep it up. Glad to hear your feeling better.

  2. nice ... looks like you could knit with it ... my first spinning was a far cry from knittable .. and took longer than 2 hours :-)


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