I’ve long been curious what the difference is between yarns spun from hand carded rolags and blending board rolags. I know that hand cards actually blend the fibers and a blending board mixes rather than thoroughly blends fiber, but I want to know what the yarns look like side by side.
Ideas always sink in best for me when I can compare things next to each other. I have a good idea of what both yarns will look like, but after I do these samples I will be better able to predict and plan rolags and yarns I want to make in the future. Plus the playing is fun!
I should be working on deadline projects that are coming up and getting ready for teaching at PLY Away, so it seemed like an ideal time to take a break play with yarn.
I got out two of my favorite tools, my Louet extra fine cotton cards and my Clemes and Clemes blending board.
For fiber I used Louet Corriedale in purple and Merino/Tencel in Garth from Cjkoho Designs. The ratio between the two fibers was somewhere between 70%/30% and 75%/25% Corriedale/ Merino-Tencel.
I spread the fibers randomly on the the blending board and did about five passes with my hand cards.
It was very hard not to upend my stash to make seventy-billion different versions on the blending board, it’s addictive!
I rolled my rolags pretty loosely and pulled them into roving.
I spun a quick 2-ply with each, using a woolen draft.
I like both yarns, but would use them differently. The carded yarn is blended well, the pink lifts the purple color-wise and I really like the flashes of shiny that the Merino/Tencel brings. I’d use this type for detail-y knitting, imagine a Fair Isle pattern with a little shine or a sparkly Brioche.
The blending board yarn is just so happy! I like the big splashes of Merino/Tencel. I could spin this yarn quite chubby and the Corriedale would keep it from being too heavy. I’d use this yarn for something simply knit with a texture stitch or just stockinette, when I want the yarn rather than the stitch pattern to sing.
Now back to work.
Which do you like, mixed or blended?
I like the hits of colour in the mixed version rather than so blended. Nice to see them side by side.
Hi Jillian just to clarify the carded rolags and resulting yarn are on the right? Because in the first photo the carders are on the left, I was confused.
Yes! The handcarded rolags and yarn are on the right in all but the first photo. Sorry for the confusion!