Spinning Tuesdays

Spinning Tuesdays: Dream Wheel Weekend

Julia Farwell-Clay of Takoma fame came to The Spinning Loft with Kelly (who makes those spinning wheel cup holders that are on every wheel you see) for a Dream Wheel Weekend. On Friday night Julia gave a talk with slide show that expanded on her wheel maker article in the most recent Spin Off. It was called “I’m Not Dead Yet” or Custom Wheel Makers Alive and Well in North America. It was fun and informative and just primed the pump for what happened on Saturday. We got to spin on a whole bunch of wheels by custom wheel makers. Yes, we did. I have the proof in pictures. It was an amazing experience! ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Another Thing I Love About Fiber People

We love to trade. I used to be a weaver. I have an eight harness Might Wolf that I haven’t used for years. It’s been hanging out at friend’s house just visiting. Then another friend got bitten by the weaving bug, big time. “What would you want for your loom?” she asks. Offering just cash is boring, we decided a combo was in order. You know how a spinning wheel can get stuck in you heart? I don’t need another wheel, but wow, this wheel waves to me, blows me kisses every time I see one. So I tell her, “I’ve always wanted a Lendrum double treadle”.  Cat out of bag, ...

Spinning Tuesday: 2 Ply or 3 Ply for Cables?

I’m spinning and knitting and fair amount of my holiday gifts, all accessories because I’m not completely crazy. Right now I’m working on a scarf for my father-in-law. It will have a cable running up the center of the scarf. The same cable that will be on my mother-in-law’s mittens. They will notice and they will get misty over it. I know! Just the type of folks you want to spin and knit for. For the scarf I’m using some New Zealand gotland. It’s commercially prepped roving. I want the cable to be smooth so I spun it worsted (don’t faint). I want the cables to pop so I spun ...

Learning to Spin

Amy and Jillian – and many of my friends around the knitting world – are avid spinners, and it seemed inevitable that I would eventually want to give it a try. I knew that Rhinebeck is a big spinning event, so I decided that my objective for the trip would be to learn to spindle spin. I did some research into what to look for in a spindle and some fiber, and set myself the most excellent task of shopping. The lovely TsockTsarina got me hooked up with a plain and simple GnomeSpun spindle, and I bought myself some gorgoeous Blue Faced Leicester roving – since the experts told me that it was easy for ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Corespinning with a Spindle?

In a recent class I took  someone talked about Sarah Anderson’s method of corespinning that she calls Wrap and Roll. The basic idea is to wrap your core on a spindle, suspend it between your knees as you spin and let the extra twist put into your core yarn untwist via the spindle. It was mentioned in passing, but the idea kept knocking on my brain, so I went and looked it up on You Tube. Sure enough, I found a video, not by Sarah herself but by someone who had taken her class. I sat down and tried it. I knew it would be fiddly to get started, so I sat out in the sun and tried to just go with it. I used 2-ply ...

Spinning Tuesdays: The Core of Corespun

On my path to Corespinning Enlightenment – a balanced corespun yarn that I can knit with, I am exploring all of the ways that I’ve been taught in classes , heard about or run across in life or on the internet. To compare the core and spinning styles of corespinning, I’ll be spinning the different styles of corespinning on my Sidekick using the largest whorl that came with the wheel. I’ll be using the same fiber in each example too, BFL top from Three Waters Farm. First up corespinning on a fine 2-ply, two different ways. Here’s what I used for a core: Because spinners are a curious ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Phat Fiber Corespun

Remember this pile of fiber from my Phat Fiber Bollywood box? It’s become about 220 yards of corespun yarn Closer on the yarn: the swatch:   I am well and truly hooked on the corespun. The knitting was unexpected like a lot of knitting with handspun. I used needles at least a size or two bigger than I would with commercially spun yarn of the same size. I think handspun yarn takes deeper breaths and fills up more space. The yarn I’ve made is going to become a scarf with a bit of shaping, maybe crescent, so it hangs on a little. Over the next few weeks here on the blog, I’m going to go back ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Double Marl

For someone who doesn’t care for the look of marled yarns, I spend a lot of time playing with them. I think I like the idea that it’s an easy way to blend color. During my class with Amy King she showed us what I like to call a double marl. It’s fun, it’s easy and the results are gorgeous. I chose 2 variegated BFL/silk Abstract Fibers tops. One that I liked and one, not so much. I stripped the fiber into pinky width strips I held the two strips together as a spun my singles, creating a marled single. Then plied the singles together in a 2-ply. The effect is densely mixed up colors. My favorite ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Dissecting Yarn with Amy King

Last Saturday I took a class with Amy King of Spunky Eclectic and Spin Control fame. The class was called Reading Your Yarn and it was about learning to dissect millspun yarns and reproduce them. I have to admit this really had never occurred to me. Sometimes I pick a yarn apart to look at plys, but never anything beyond that. We looked at prep, twist, spinning technique and ply. We all brought a yarn or two we really like to take apart and try to make. I brought Osprey by Quince & Co., because I just bought it am in deep love. It’s a springy 3-ply with more loft than any 3-ply that I’ve ever worked ...

Spinning Tuesdays: Spin in Public and Briar Rose Winner

The spinner who will be happily spinning Briar Rose Fibers silk is Deborah from Illinois. Thanks to Briar Rose Fibers for a wonderful prize! I took to the streets, (well a hallway really – it was chilly) with my spinning pals for World Wide Spin In Public Day. Amy came down from Toronto and met her new Sidekick. We spun at The Spinning Loft where there were treats and sales and at any given time 20+ spinners. I only took a few pictures because I was spinning. We made a few new spinners answered lots of questions about spinning and ate cupcakes. What did you do for Spin in Public Day?