I’ve now spun on a wheel and on a spindle. While I was very frustrated at the beginning of the spindle class, it eventually made much more sense to me than spinning on a wheel. There are so many parts to the wheel, so much happening at once, that I couldn’t really conceptualize what was going on. It was easier on the spindle, once I got past the silently screaming phase anyway.
The kit that I bought for my spindle class came with a few ounces of fiber. I used up most of the roving in class, but had a surprising amount of combed top left. I like the top better anyway. So, I spun that up over a week or so, getting better all the time. Then came time to ply. I completely forgot about making a plying ball, and put each ball of singles into a mug to keep them from rolling around and started plying. It was very frustrating and I don’t think I’ll ever forget to make a plying ball again.
This is my two-ply, mostly worsted-spun yarn!
I think it came out pretty well! There’s hardly enough to do anything with, so I think I’ll tuck it away as my first real finished yarn.
After that, I found some of the white top that had been separated from its brethren for no apparent reason. So I spun that and tried my hand at chain-plying. That was really hard. The single I spun was very “energetic” (the polite term for “way too overspun”) and that makes chain-plying much, much harder since the single keeps trying to strangle itself. It’s kind of like wrestling with cling wrap. When it worked, I loved the technique. When it didn’t work, I wanted to burn the whole darn mess, except that it’s wool and wool doesn’t burn well.
Worsted-spun chain-plied skeinlette.
For comparison, here’s all three of my yarns together. Wheel-spun single, spindle-spun two-ply, and spindle-spun chain-ply.
I do believe my drafting has gotten much better!