Saturday, January 14, 2012

Spinning, Sparkles and Snow

I was going to write a blog post about some things we're working on around the farm, but then I was distracted by some spinning and knitting and the lovely snow.

How many inches fell where you are?  We only have about 2.5 inches but its very pretty.  It seems to have stopped for the day, but the wind is blowing things around out there.

Spinning....spinning batts....spinning challenges.  I was poking around in the fiber stash the other day and came across some pretty batts I'd carded last year at a friends house.  There wasn't alot, just a few ounces, but it was so pretty and so soft.  Corriedale, of course, both natural and dyed along with angora and just a bit of "twinkle". 

Then it just so happened that the lovely group at Ennea Collective mentioned a spinning challenge for 2012, and the first of those was spinning batts.  Well, it was just meant to be that I finish spinning these up, don't you think?  That's exactly what I did, and I loved every single minute of it.  Clean, soft, well prepared fiber, watching the colors glow and change as they slid through my hands and onto the wheel.  Sigh...delightful!  Let me show you a little bit of what I did to spin ~

In the picture above, you are actually seeing two batts but each has been divided in half giving me four lengths of fiber to spin.  In other words, sections one and three are from one batt and sections two and four are from another.  I did this for two reasons.  First to give me a more manageable amount of fiber to draft and spin and second so that I could blend the colors a bit more on the wheel.  I think you can see pretty clearly in the photo that I had more of the dyed wool in one batt than I did the other!   I spun one bobbin full in the sequence above - sections 1,2, 3 then 4.  I spun a second bobbin in the order of 2, 3, 4 then 1.  And then I plied them together.  Is that clear as mud? you even care ((grin))  Was I overthinking the process?  Maybe, but I like the end results, pictured below ~

About 364 yards, 2-ply, both spun and plied on my Louet S-17, medium whorl.  This might become mittens or a hat or a cowl, not sure yet.  Or maybe the Windchaser Shawl by Lori Law, from the same issue of Ennea.  I could spin some solid grey for the border. yarn is a little heavier than fingering, more a sport weight, so I may not have enough.  But wouldn't that be pretty?

This was such a happy project for me, thanks Ennea crew for suggesting spinning batts!

Here's another happy project, a knitting one.  At my LYS, Sip 'n Knit, we're knitting socks.  This is actually a pattern that I wrote up called Sip 'n Sock.  It's simple, really, just a basic sock with a coffee cup motif.  I wanted to do a shop sample out of a soft squishy yarn and we had been having those dreary grey days, so I grabbed two hanks of Cascade 128.  How's this for a bright sock, LOL!  I shouldn't lose these, should I?  The red is some of my yarn, leftovers from making mittens.  Looking at it now, I kind of wish I would have made the heel red as well.  I need to hurry up and finish the second sock so I'll have those to wear around the house now that the temperature has dropped into the teens!

Finally, here's what's next on the spinning wheel, another "finish-up" project of just four ounces:

This was named "Ugly Duck" by its producer, but I don't think its ugly at all!  Unique maybe ;)  Anyway, I came across this the other day, too, fiber I received in a swap and thought I just need to finish spinning it as well.  I'm pretty sure its going to remain a single.  And I think I need to check that fiber stash more often! 

I'm looking forward to spinning at Sip 'n Knit on Saturday.  Any of you reading near Ithaca Michigan, feel free to join us!  We'll be there from 10 am till about 2 pm.


Lona said...

Beautiful work! Love the socks with the cuppa on them. We missed you at Shepherd's Weekend. =(

Jody said...

I will have to try carding some of the Corriedale with Angora. Now which Angora to choose...French, German or Satin??

Kathy W said...

Was just carding some batts myself, when I decided I needed a break and sat down to check your blog. Lovely yarn! Love the coffee cup socks too! I usually work off 2 batts at a time. One strip from this one, one strip from that one. I think I get more even colors that way. I do this even if spinning natural colors. Because those batts can vary in shade too.

Joanne said...

You did a great job spinning! Love the yarns. Your sock is such a great idea! Great job! Oh, and thanks for the snow photo. I do miss snow and it is fun to see it on your blog. :)