about the essentials of life...knitting, designing knitting, yarn for knitting...you get the idea...

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I'm a knitter, knitting pattern designer, and spinner. I also dye yarn with both acid and natural dyes.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

I'm A Spinner!

At left: the light colored yarn is from the drop spindle and the dark is my first wheel spun yarn.

Last night was our second spinning class. We had started out with drop spindles (see previous post for what that led to). I practiced diligently all week, using all the roving and filling the spindle twice. I was pretty worried that I'm too slowww at drawing out the fiber and how would I ever cope with the speed of a wheel? So I practiced and practiced, figuring that I needed a lot of improvement before this week's wheel class.
I took my spindle to class and Bethe, supportive teacher that she is, congratulated me on the smoothness of my yarn. Looked pretty awful to me, but hey, what do I know? She pronounced us ready to start learning how to use a wheel. We started out by just treadling for about half an hour and then we added the hand part that we'd been practicing. Well, to my surprise, it's actually easier to spin on a wheel! By the end of the lesson, we were treadling with our feet, drawing with both hands, and talking, talking...


I need a spinning wheel! Really. I have a birthday coming up, but new spinning wheels are pricey. I've been all over the 'net today looking for a used double treadle spinning wheel in good condition that doesn't cost $150 to ship. Anyone know of any?

On the knitting front, as usual, I was thinking up new variations to my moebius lace pattern instead of writing up what I'd already knit. Well, I thought, I have a 1 skein scarf version, a 2 skein hood version, I wonder how many skeins a shawl would take? Just to get an idea, I tried on the hood on my shoulders instead of my head. Look at what I found!

Wow! This is great! Now I have a shawl that won't fall off, I can't lose, and I don't need to hold it on! Just need to format that pattern...

Remember those socks I was going to tinker with last weekend? As usual, tinkering became Changing In A Big Way and I started all over. I've gotten used to this by now, so I didn't frog the first sock, just started the second in a different way. That way I have the first as a reference and I can decide which parts of each sock I prefer. So far, I'm liking this new version much more, but it's been slowww going. I seem to have forgotten how to count again. I had to redo one repeat 5 (five) times. It's not hard, I promise, but you do have to keep track of where you are. As I've already said, apparently I can no longer reliably count.

I can't show you a picture of said sock (it's tentatively promised), but I can show you the sweet yarn that inspired the design:

Isn't it gorgeous?

Of course the design is feminine and romantic.

Not my usual thing at all, but, hey, I never thought I'd be craving a spinning wheel, either.


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