Spinning Tuesdays

Spinning Tuesday: Inspired by Deborah Robson

I have been inspired by Deborah Robson. First, I took a Rare Breeds class from her at The Spinning Loft. Then, I watched her DVD set Handspinning Rare Wools.   Then, I read an advance of her soon to be published book with Carol Ekarius, The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook: More than 200 Fibers, from Animal to Spun Yarn. With every encounter, in person or virtually, I was uplifted and nearly overwhelmed by her expertise and passion for her subject, particularly rare and endangered sheep. I became inspired, obsessed really, with the idea of spinning a wider variety of fiber. Exposing my spinning and brain to breeds ...

Spinning Tuesday: More Marled Swatches

Last week I got my spin on with multi colored fibers plied with naturals, creating a variety of marled yarns. This week I knit them. Come take a peek: First up Spunky Eclectic colorway Diesel. Here are the yarns: And the swatches: I love all four of these – each natural brings out something different in the original fiber. I would be happy spinning and knitting a whole sweater out of any one of them. Yum. Now Fiberstory. The yarns: The swatches: I feel exactly the opposite about these swatches. None of them do it for me, the yarns didn’t either. I think the brown is ok, but the rest seem to take away from ...

Spinning Tuesday: More marling with color and naturals

I couldn’t keep my mind and hands off of the marling this week. I doubled the number of naturals tried, I couldn’t help myself. That means this week we have yarn to look at; swatches will come next week. I spun the other three fibers with four different naturals, instead of just the two I used for Briar Rose. Let’s see what they look like First up Abstract Fibers. Here it is nestled in the circle of fiber. That green is fantastic but will it contrast too much? As plies I used (from left) oatmeal, light/dark brown stripe, middle brown and dark brown. I really love how it looks with the dark brown and ...

Spinning Tuesday: Making your fiber go farther by marling on purpose

I’m still thinking about marling, but now I’m marling for a purpose. More often than not I buy my fiber in 4oz increments, especially when I don’t know what I’ll make with it. Then comes the time when I pull it out to spin a 2-ply with it, and I want more yardage than 4 oz can get me. What’s a spinner to do? This spinner stretches fiber by marling on purpose. When I have fiber that has  colors I love, I marl with a natural color, it makes a variation on the colorway. When I have I fiber whose color combo no longer makes me sing, I marl with a second color or colorway to create a new ...

Spinning a tale with Rachael

The love started yesterday…if you’re wondering what’s going on today, take a peek! The lucky winner of yesterday’s “Name the book you’d write”, chosen by Rachael herself, is “Needle Me Knot, Little old ladies using unique methods to kill.” She loved both the title and the premise.  Although it was DIFFICULT to pick, sez she. Winner is Sherry from Idaho. Congrats, Sherry — you’ll be receiving a copy of Rachael’s brand-new book, HOW TO KNIT A HEART BACK HOME! And now, onto day 2 of the week of Looooooove! Knitty: Your first novel was full of ...

Spinning Tuesday: Knitting Marls & Our Mitten Winner

The winner of the Shelburne Mittens kit is comment number 1125, Lisa S! Thank you to the lovely folks at Rowan Yarn and Westminster Fibers for donating this prize.   Now for some spinning. As requested, the marled yarns knit into swatches. First the blue and white: Like the yarn, the fatter the original yarn the marl in the knitted fabric is more pronounced. In the finest sample it looks like flecks.   How about the blue and green yarn: I wish I had spun larger samples of these, but I do like how the colors blend even more when the yarn is knit. There is striping and pooling, but it’s interesting to ...

Spinning Tuesday: What I’ve noticed about marling

Barber pole, peppermint stick, marl are all used to describe a type of yarn that has two high-contrast singles plied together. It’s a type of yarn I really don’t care for. Though I have recently made marled yarns with less contrast that I’ve really liked. I’ve also noticed the weight of the yarn makes a difference in the marling. So I’ve been experimenting, want to see? I started with high contrast blue and white Romney, spun and plied to three different weights: bulky, worsted and DK/fingering. Here’s what I see, as the yarn gets thinner and the twists per inch number gets higher, ...

Tiny weeny spindle

I have a weakness for spindles. Only one spinning wheel, but the spindle count is above 15. Not sure how much above 15. I love that they’re portable, and I love the sculptural quality of the spindles I choose. My latest love was spotted across a crowded Silk Retreat room — it’s a Jenkins Turkish Delight. I’ve been a staunch top-whorl girl since I learned to spindle. But this thing was so freaking cute, I couldn’t resist. Especially with yarn on it. You wind the yarn on over two arms, under one, and that gives a nice, plump square-shaped cop. At right, you see my little Turkish Delight, ...

Spinning Tuesday: Annis is Finished!

Don’t faint, but I’ve finished something else. My handspun Annis: I started spinning for this January 1 and have the shawl blocked and finished February 1. I still can’t believe that I worked on a project from start to finish, until it was done. No sidetracks (well, not many), no timeouts. I spun yarn that was almost DK, so the shawl is larger than the original, but that’s what I wanted. The spectacular thing about spinning your own yarn is that you can make exactly what you want, by blending color and fibers, and by the way you spin your yarn. I wanted my version of Annis to be a littler ...

Spinning: Annis and Nupp Knitting

I’m not quite done knitting Annis, but it’s still gorgeous, even unblocked: I almost didn’t choose Annis to knit because it has nupps. I have issues with nupps; I love how they look and hate to knit them and this patterns has 7-stitch nupps. So I went trolling the wonderful world of the web and found an amazing technique by Myra Wood. She calls it Easy Peasy Nupp, In fact,it’s so easy it saved this pattern for me, and tranformed my thinking about knitting nupps. No lie! Brilliant isn’t it? I like it because it’s easy, but also because you can choose the size of nupp you want. ...