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Friday, October 8, 2010

Spinning a Good Yarn

You may remember that I've been dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome. Well, I have good new to report: I now have almost no pain in my writs, and can do small amounts of knitting and typing again. Yay! (I will avoid dragging you through a philosophical discussion of pleasure and pain- at  least for today.)

Some good, however, did come from not being able to knit. I discovered that spinning didn't hurt my wrists, so I picked up my spindle and started to work on my much-neglected fibre stash. A quick re-cap of my earlier spinning projects:

Project #1: black alpaca from Colorado:

 
Very loose twist and plying. This became, unintentionally, thick-thin yarn, going from being very thick to very thin with no pattern. It's very soft, but I have some worries how it will hold up when knitted (it might untwist). Also, because I did a poor job of drafting the fibre (pulling it loose so it can be spun) I ended up wasting a lot.

Project #2: Hand-dyed alpaca from...somewhere.

Way over-spun and over-plied (I was determined not to make the same mistake I did on my first try), this yarn retains none of the softness characteristic of alpaca. I spun it as a gift for a friend. I don't think she's used it yet (and, honestly, I don't blame her), though it will be interesting to see how it knits up. I think it'll be very energetic and twist and pull the fibre. Could actually end up really cool.

Well, the say "practice makes perfect" and "third's time the charm", and that seems to have been the case. The yarn I just finished spinning came out, well, wonderful.

Project #3: light brown Alpaca from Victoria, Canada


This yarn is a dream. It's soft, has a gentle halo, and is spun so evenly I can actually get a good idea of its gauge (it's not perfect, but close). If I saw this yarn in a yarn store, I would probably but it. My plans are to dye this yarn (along with the yarn I'm currently spinning) and weave it on a loom I'm planning to build. More on that later.

(By the way, does anyone else love the title of this post? I t makes me happy because it works in two ways- literally spinning yarn, metaphorically telling a story :) )

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