Monday, September 17, 2007

Are You Sitting Down?

Y'all are never gonna believe this.

But first, the backstory. A few years ago at Stitches Midwest, Suzie and I were conned into buying silk scarf kits. The kits consisted of hand-dyed silk hankies and instructions for spinning and knitting the silk. The lady at the booth enthusiastically instructed us on the procedure, and we got started on them that night in the hotel room. You can see some pictures of Suzie and I working on it at the bottom of this post.

It became obvious to both Suzie and me after working on this project at home that perhaps legitimate spindles would be helpful, and this year Suzie confirmed that indeed it had been helpful for her.

Now I have always said that I did not want to take up spinning as a hobby, as knitting keeps me more than entertained, and it's a lot to learn, but I've also wanted to give it a try just to see what it was like. But seeing as how I don't really have any desire to spin or spin well, taking a class or getting help from someone seemed a waste of time for more than just me. And I also didn't see much point in spending a lot of money on a spindle just so I could finish the silk scarf kit.

So when this weekend while at A Wool Gathering (a small fiber "festival" near Dayton, OH), I saw a kit including not only a small amount of fiber, but a purple spindle for a mere $15, I didn't have to think very hard before buying it.

And this is what I did yesterday: I taught myself how to spin. Granted, I had paid very close attention when Gwen was tutored at the very Stitches Midwest that gave me my silken UFO.

The kit came with two balls of cream and one of pink. I have yet to decide what to do with it. I'd like to combine it somehow into a hat or something, but I'm not sure how to do it with three pieces. I guess the simplest would be to ply the three together. Or I could just ply each on themselves, and get solid colors. But I'd really like to combine the pink and the cream, and maybe get a stripe or something. Can you somehow blend two singles into one long one? Or do I just get a bunch of short pieces of yarn depending on how much I can fit on the spindle? I did the first ball of roving in one piece, but I don't know how much more I could put on it. I really should weigh them so I know if they're equal amounts or not.

At any rate, this should get it out of my system, and the spindle should facilitate finishing the silk project. I'll be back to knitting in no time.


Teri said...

Welcome to the wonderful world of spinning. Do you like the process?

You can ply two different singles together. Make sure they're both spun the same direction ( Z or S twist) Spinning in the old way is a book that has some really great drawings and examples.

Amanda said...

Welcome to the dark side! ;0)

It looks absolutely lovely for your first spinning. Mine was a complete disaster...okay, it still is, but I'm working on it.

Sorry to hear the Dayton Guild isn't what you're looking for. Maybe the Weaver's Guild will start attracting more members. It's just once a month or so, right? Let me know if it's worth joining up.

Happy Friday eve!