Saturday, July 2, 2011

Finishing Up

For some reason, I've been on a big finishing binge lately.  I finished up a drop spindle project so I could have the skein for the class I just did at 365 Days on a Farm in Eldridge, IA (which was tons of fun, by the way):
I finished a bump of Louet Northern Lights wool that I've had on the Hitchhiker spinning wheel:

This is going to be used in a project with some black merino I'm going to spin one day.  I'm picturing a fair
isle yoke sweater with the black background and this wonderful gold/orange/red yarn as the pattern yarn.  Now I just need to get the black spun!

Then there's this funky yarn.  I bought this wool at a place in northern Illinois because I loved the colors - so tropical and luscious.  When I started spinning, however, I discovered the fiber was a really poor preparation and was yucky to spin.  I did a small skein from my first experiment and gave it away because I didn't like it.

But the fiber kept laying around and I finally decided if it didn't want to spin regularly, I'd spin a novelty yarn with it.  So here's what I came up with:
Finally, here's a skein from the final bag of Kickapoo Creek Alapaca fiber - a mixture of alpaca, merino and silk.  She always had her fiber prepared in a "cloud" which is not even close to being my favorite preparation.  I'd bought this fiber probably 4 years ago and had started spinning on it about 6 months ago.  Since it was on the bobbin, it got caught up in the fever.
I decided, since it's such a soft mixture, that I wanted to spin a worsted weight 3-ply that would be light and fluffy.  It actually came out just a little lighter than worsted but I'm really pleased with it. I spun this on a medium ratio and then plied it on a slightly higher ratio.  The thinking behind this is that when it's plied, you lose some of the twist from the singles.  When you ply on a higher ratio, you lose more of the twist.  That makes the yarn looser and lets the softer qualities come forward.  This photo is the skein before it's been washed.  Once it's washed it will fluff up wonderfully and I want to use it for a cowl.  I see a ribbed fabric just slightly fluted at both ends.

Not pictured here because they're not quite finished yet are a camel yarn that is in the process of being plied on the Minstrel and some Clun Forest that's being worked on the Fricke.  I don't have high hopes because I didn't do a very good job with the singles.  Comes from not being very good at the long draw.  I've been practicing, though, and I think I'm getting better at it.  The aforementioned Clun Forest, the Cormo I'm spinning and the Navajo Churro/Mohair fiber I'm spinning with the Navajo spindle (which I'm almost finished with, too) are all using the long draw so I'm getting lots of practice.

It's very satisfying to get things finished but I always get a little, ummm, sort of, well, shall we say driven.  Gotta go finish my camel.