Tuesday, May 18, 2010

3N1: The Spinning Monster

Last night the spinning monster hit me so I went downstairs where the wheel was hiding and started to play with some fiber.

Spinning Singles:
First I decided to spin up some hand-dyed Panda fiber that I had dyed a bit ago. I wanted to see how it would handle if I spun a 'kinda' thick singles and then finish it the way Judith MacKenzie McCuin suggests in the Spring 2010 issue of Spin-Off Magazine - "Spinning Pleasantly Plump and Silky Singles" (her lustrous yarn on the front cover was 50/50 wool/silk).

The spinning was fun and fast. The skein was just like a scrunchie when I slid it off from the niddy noddy - just like Judith said. The finishing was a bit messy, as I used Judith's method of sloshing the skein around in hot soapy water with a plunger (brand new of course and just for yarn), and then into cold water and then hot, cold... a good squeeze in a towel and up to dry.

I'm sorry I didn't think to take pictures of the process, but here is the outcome.

The 'Perfect' Skein:
... next up was some Bluefaced Leicester that I had purchased from my friend Felicia Lo of SweetGeorgia Yarns. I dyed up a small lot a few weeks ago and this was some 'extra' that I wanted to play with. It's dyed in purples, blues and grays and felt so soft to spin and ply.

Usually when I take my skeins off from the niddy noddy, I usually get some, to a lot, of twist. This time? The skein hung nice and straight. Perhaps watching Judith spin on her new DVD's, The Gentle Art of Plying helped.

I decided not to wet-finish it just yet. Just in case I do use it in a weaving project. It's best to wet-finish the cloth after weaving, instead of the yarn before. Just more advise I've received from Judith. She is such a joy to work with.

The Coil:
I confess, this didn't really happen last night. It was about a week ago, shortly after MD Sheep & Wool.

The inspiration this time came from the Winter 2009 issue of Spin-Off Magazine - "Coils: Adding To Your Art Yarn Repertoire", by Jacey Boggs. I had read the article over many times and found it very easy to understand. Just takes a bit of patience and practice to get it right when you're actually doing it.

I certainly need to keep up and practice at it. Some of the coils have no definition, others somehow just got lost, some slid a bit before I could anchor them, but some, a wee few, turned out quite nice.

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