Beginning to spin
|February 26, 2015||Posted by Emily under Emily's 2015 Projects, Spinning, Yarn|
I’m beginning to spin. Beginning to learn anyway. For years (since high school) I have owned a vintage Ashford Traditional that was not in working order…it always seemed like one of those things I would like doing, but it never had enough draw to get me involved. One year at A Wool Gathering I saw a spinning wheel like mine and the thing it was missing..just a bit of fishing line with two springs. I bought some fiber and thought I’d finally fix it. And I didn’t. Then last year when I attended again, I thought maybe I’d pick up a drop spindle. Start slow-right?
The spindle in the picture above is from ‘The Rouge Lucet’. I don’t remember what the wood is, but it is very pretty. The fiber on the spindle is from Valhalla Acres. The roving is from a BFL Cross lamb and is 90% wool and 10% rayon thrums.
I love spinning on the drop spindle. I love it in the sense that I think I will sit for 15 minutes and spin, and two hours later I’m forcing myself to stop. I’m not a big fan of the fiber, but after messing with some other fibers-I think it is specific to that roving. It is just so felty. You can get a nice smooth, thin thread then suddenly it’s all felted and won’t separate. Also the bits of added thrums annoyed me and I picked out all the biggest bits. I realize I’m also probably being harder on myself than I should be as this is the very first yarn I have spun. But meh. If these are my results I could just go buy yarn.
After I spun 2 ounces (1 ounce at a time) I wound them into cakes and plied them pulling one thread from the outside and one from the inside. (This might have a technical term, I just ran across it by googling.)
I don’t hate the finished yarn-I ended up with around 175 yards at a DKish weight..the thick/thinness makes it hard to tell for sure. My only fear with this yarn is that it already looks felted and worn. If I knit something with it, is it already going to look worn? I need to ball it up and start knitting to see. I still have 2 more ounces of the fiber. I also have 4 more ounces of another roving from Valhalla Acres in a rich red (I have tested this and it doesn’t look felted once spun) and an unknown brand of New Zealand Merino in a silver color.
I also cleaned up the spinning wheel, bought an Ashford maintenance kit, and played on spinning on it. I don’t hate it. I don’t love it. That’s really where I’m at with it. I listen to podcasts that talk about spinning and they get technical-I’m not sure I’m in to all that. For me I think it will always be a ‘novel’ thing to do and not something I really get deep in to. I think I’m going to give it a year and if the wheel still holds no interest for me I’m going to sell it and purchase a cricket loom. At least that’s what I’m thinking now.