Sunday, June 10, 2007

Spinning and Knitting as if I Really Had The Time

Hi there! Just introducing myself. I've been spinning off and on again since the 1980's but most of the time I spun for sweaters. I've gotten into lace more recently so now I've been spinning towards obtaining a decent lace weight yarn so I can knit with it. To date, I've only knit three shawls with my own lace weight and I hope I'm getting better at the spinning. Since I had already started spinning singles I'm going to post progress on two different fibers on two different wheels. My sister and I own three wheels. Which ever fiber gets done first will be the one that gets made into a shawl. See above the "Hardware" for the first fiber. It's my good old reliable Schacht single treadle. I love this baby dearly but have difficulty using the high speed whorl and bobbin so I'm not using it for this project. Just the regular old bobbin with the smaller standard whorl. The already filled bobbin is 4 ounces of Lisa Souza's Merino in the colorway "Petroglyph". I bought this fiber one year at Stitches West but there was only the single braid merino to be had at the time. See also, the same colorway in BFL, also from Lisa Souza. Because it's BFL, and because it takes the same colors differently, It looks different from the merino (see the partially started bobbin of BFL). I intend to ply these two different fibers to see what I get. I think it will be very pretty and I'm hoping that the BFL will give the yarn strength and a little sheen while the Merino gives it a little softer hand than you would get with 100% BFL.
Next, see my sisters wheel, a Majacraft Rose. This is the "Hardware" for the second fiber choice. Years and years ago, when I was still knitting cable sweaters and spinning yarn for those projects, I bought a HUGE amount of this green fiber. it's a 70/30 Merino/Silk from Widdershin Woolworks and, as you can see it only cost me $9 for 4 oz at the time. I've already made one shawl from it but my spinning has improved since then. It was Mountain Pines and has since been given to a friend in Seattle. On the Rose, I bought the optional lace flyer/bobbins because I found I disliked using the delta orifice. This had more to do with my "less than standard" way of sitting at the wheel to spin, than with the actual delta. I know lots of people do just fine with the delta orifice but I have to say that I love the lace flyer and it makes my spinning just fly. The wheel that will not be in service is our Lendrum. My sister is spinning on it at the moment but it does make decent lace singles as well.
I have no idea what pattern I will be making. I have a whole list of shawls I want to make but it will depend on how well I do with this spinning and plying. My biggest challenge will be to gain consistency not only with the spinning but the plying. In the past, I have lacked the patience required to ply well. I hope to overcome this problem this time. Here is wishing luck to everyone who will be joining in on this project! Though I've joined groups for information about particular shawls in the past, I've never participated in something where I had to post progress. I think it will be a blast. Until the next post!


Stephanie said...

oh my goodness. I spin fine, but I don't think I've ever spun quite *that* fine! Whatever you choose to knit, I'm sure it will be stunning!

Opal said...

it's great seeing you here jane! i love what you do, whatever you do.