The Daily Skein

All the craft that’s fit to make.

I made yarn! September 22, 2009

Filed under: spinning — Cailyn @ 3:20 pm
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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!


SS09 Debriefing, Part 2 August 18, 2009

Filed under: Musings,spinning — Cailyn @ 1:30 pm
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I went all out and took a class in every slot available.  I thought about not taking a class on Saturday morning, the logic being that by then I would be pretty tired and want to sleep in and there wasn’t a class that I was utterly dying to take then.  But then I thought, this might be the only opportunity to take these classes at all!  So I registered for a Saturday morning class.  Turned out that all my previous thoughts had been true, I was tired and I didn’t really get much out of the class.  But I met some fun people and the teacher, Charlene Schurch, was very nice.




My favorite classes were the ones I took on publishing designs, which I don’t have pictures of since they were just lectures.  I got lots of good information, including tips on how to get a book published.  A book is my long term goal but it won’t be happening anytime soon.  First, I have to build a “platform.”  Basically, this blog needs to get big enough that a publisher sees my audience as worth the publishing cost, or I have to become wealthy enough to independently publish it.  Both of which will take some time, I think!


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I enjoyed my class with Janel Laidman, the author of The Eclectic Sole and has beautiful color work socks.  She was very friendly and complimented my Arthurian Anklets!  I love knitting color work but I’ve never gotten a good fit on color work socks.  I now have some good tips to help with that, so expect to see some more stranded socks coming this winter!


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I loved the spindle spinning class that I took Saturday afternoon.  Abby and Denny were great teachers.  Well, I didn’t think they were so great for about the first hour of class.  I kept breaking my “yarn” and I couldn’t figure out what was going on.  I was frustrated and feeling kind of mentally fuzzy; you know that feeling you get when you’re trying really hard to understand something but it’s just not working?  Yeah.  When things finally clicked, though, oh man!  I was totally hooked.  I ran right over to the marketplace after class and grabbed some fiber!  By the end of class, my yarn was even and thin if a bit fuzzy and all I wanted to do was to keep spinning.  I’m almost done spinning the fiber that came with the class kit then I will try plying it and then… I will start spinning my new fiber!! (I’m trying hard not to get too obsessed with spinning.  But it’s really fun.  I don’t even know why.)


Next post I’ll show you all the tasty things I bought at the marketplace!