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  • knitting1105 1:35 pm on February 21, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Fiber Arts, , , , ,   

    Reef 

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    I finally have spun up the Reef Gradient from Fiber Optic.

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    This was the first of Kimber’s gradients that I purchased (I was already a fan, and had been in her club for 1 year).  This sat on the shelf, as I felt while the colors were beautiful, that it was too bright and just not ME.  Well, times have changed, and this long long winter has me looking for bright and sunny and anything that feels like warmth everywhere.  

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    I have also come to appreciated the bright colored shawls and how striking they actually are.

    My spinning was not as even as normal, so I had to pull it out a few times to bring the colors back into closer alignment.  I do like some overlap to transition, but a couple of times it was too much.  After plying it was washed and set on the bathroom radiator to dry.  990 yards of 2ply.

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    And then the photographs.  The colors were so beautiful and intense that I took tons of photos.  Enjoy the splash of brightness!

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    Now, I really want to knit this into a shawl quickly.  I have a couple of ideas…

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    • Diane Hamilton 9:58 pm on February 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Love the colors, anxious to see what you do with this yarn. I know whatever you do will be beautiful as always. It reminds me of a beautiful sunset on Lake Michigan!

      Like

    • Vonna 12:43 am on February 24, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      990yds you are awesome! I hope to do that amount one day.

      Like

    • CWLFibers 4:44 pm on February 26, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      How lovely.

      Like

  • knitting1105 6:47 pm on May 15, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Fiber Arts, , ,   

    Well Balanced Yarn 

    Spinning is much more complex than just spinning the wool so that it is even in thickness.  I have really been focusing on spinning a very fine single, as I prefer to knit with finer yarns. Then comes the plying, taking 2 or more bobbins of singles together and spinning them on the wheel in the opposite direction (usually counter-clockwise) to make a plied yarn to knit with.  The goal is plying with just enough twist to counter balance the twist in the singles.  I found this article to be very helpful.  I like her approach much better than some of the others which require a test sample washed and dried, or lots of complicated formulas.  My guess would be that the spinners of old had an intuitive sense of when the yarn was correct.  If you have too little twist in the plied yarn, it will twist back on itself and not be a very well structured yarn.  Too much twist will also twist on itself.  Both result in a yarn that knits with an angle and you do not achieve a straight knitted fabric.  The above linked article does a very good job of demonstrating this.

    So, I had these 2 rovings that I then spun into singles.  I had used bits of both of them at my Insubordiknit spinning weekend, so did not have a lot to make a skein of just one or the other.  This is fiber that I purchased from the Dizzy Sheep spinning weekend sale few weeks ago.  These are 4 oz hand painted Merino tops from Spinner’s Hill.  Colors are Blue Glass and Olives.

    So, after spinning the singles, I chose to ply these together.  I am quite happy with the results, and I really did achieve a nicely balanced yarn!  There are still some inconsistencies in the spinning of my singles, but I am quite happy with the outcome both in terms of color and how the yarn feels.  This is being gifted to a dear friend who is a great spinning supporter for me.

     
  • knitting1105 6:26 pm on April 17, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Fiber Arts,   

    Spinning Art 

    Spinning Art Yarns that is.  I just returned from a weekend spinning retreat with Jacey Boggs.  She is known for spinning art yarns, and that is what this retreat was about.  Manning had asked me why I would want to take this class, since the yarns are really nothing that I use in my own knitting.  My response to her was that I am trying to master spinning, and this would improve my skill set.  It did.  Jacey is a very good technical teacher.  At first I was a bit intimidated by the other attendees knowledge, spinning vocabulary, and past works.  But, I persevered.  I am a fabulous knitter (self-proclaimed of course), and thought that I should be able to get this skill honed also.  I was right, and impressed my self with what I was able to accomplish with a few short hours of instruction.  While at times it was frustrating for me, I have a successful section of every type of yarn we practiced spinning.

    Here are some photos fresh from the retreat.  It was a very lively group, with some memorable personalities.

    The group, and many of my new friends on Ravelry:

    And Jacey teaching.  She is very patient, and explains how to accomplish each technique very well:

    And from this roving:

    I made this and this:

    My yarns have all had a hot bath, and are hanging to dry.  I will post and explain more about the techniques tomorrow.

    Still on the bobbin:

     
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