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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Bobbin 3 of the Beach Corriedale

I'm almost through with the third bobbin of this. I definitely think I'm getting a fluffy yarn, but I think I might have changed the size of the singles I'm spinning so I will ply bobbins 1 and 2 with bobbins 3 and 4 instead of the way I had originally planned and separated the roving by weight (1 and 2 together and 3 and 4 together was the original plan) - hopefully this will give me a more even finished yarn.

I did go to Kindergarten yesterday and it went really well. Something about a spinning wheel captures the attention of even the most active and wiggly kids and they sat perfectly still and watched while I spun, both with drop spindles and the wheel. The teachers thought I should hypnotize them every day! Of course before I went, I did some research on the history of spinning (the teacher specifically asked if I could present it in a historical context), re-read at least parts of all of my spinning books and went stash diving to find different fibers for the kids to see and feel. All this has made me really think about where I am with my spinning and where I'd like to go.

Overall I'm pretty happy with my spinning (I mean I get yarn so I must be doing something right), but because I've never had a class, sometimes I question myself and wonder if I'm doing everything in the most efficient way possible. On the other hand, not having classes has probably made me more adventurous with some things just because I didn't know to be afraid of them. Spinning cashmere, silk, and slippery mohair are all considered more challenging because they are so slippery and in the case of cashmere, because of the shorter fiber length. I just picked a whorl with a high ratio, adjusted my take up tension to almost nothing, and treadled like crazy to get the twist in there before it all drifted apart - and it worked. They probably aren't the most technically perfect yarns I've made, but whoever said ignorance is bliss wasn't kidding.

There are some things that I haven't tried yet with spinning and I'm going to set myself some goals for the New Year - New Year's Spinning Resolutions I guess:

I want to spin some linen. Not necessarily tons of it, just enough to figure out if I like it and how its done.

I want to learn how to spin cotton - again, more to try it out and learn how its done.

I want to do more of the "complex" yarns - the kinds of yarns that go beyond 2 or 3 ply. The cabled yarn I made was fun and I'd like to do more of these different types of yarns, maybe try to spin some novelty yarns, just for fun. I'll use colored fibers to spin these with so I don't go crazy with the monotony of the white again.

Finally, I want to dye with "real" dyes. The food color and Easter Egg dyes are fun, but they have definite limitations - purple fades to grey and I have yet to get a stable pink out of the food colors. Caleb is getting older and will leave stuff alone so I feel like it would be safe to venture into the "real" dyes. Also, this will help me with the "Spinning white wool is beautiful, but freakishly boring" issues that I have. I've already ordered a few dyes to play around with!

I'll probably add to this list with some knitting goals and possibly adapt things as we get closer to the beginning of next year, but I like the idea of Fiber Goals for 2007 and I'd like to challenge everyone to make some goals of their own, depending on where you are personally in your fiber adventure and write them down. Whatever goals you choose, they'll be a lot more fun than the yearly weight loss resolutions we all make. Besides, if your hands are full of fiber, you can't very well eat anyway, can you?


Anonymous Caroline M said...

I am taking my first spinning class in January. I'm self taught so I don't know what it is that I don't know. I worry that they are going to tell me that I'm doing everything all wrong yet I know I can't be because I make knittable yarn.

I do like the colours in that single.

9:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I do to satisfy kids is have two dye runs going, one for me, one for them with the food dyes. I give them a couple of ounces to mess with (which I do, in fact, spin up later) and they let me do my thing. Just an idea!

10:22 AM  
Anonymous Eva said...

My goals for 2007??? Have a look here :) I posted about it and so far everyone's said I'm c.r.a.z.y LOL.

Cheers Eva
PS: if you feel like participating, feel free to let me know hihihi.

1:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

that's looking lovely!

And I think your spinning ambitions are admirable.

I did my own fibre 'to do' list a few days ago and realised there's A LOT I want to do! It'll be great to look back in a year and see how we all went, won't it?

4:35 PM  

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