Friday, January 13, 2012

Spinning for Joy! (And More Toes)

My beautiful handspun
I certainly had some fibery excitement this week!  Kelie brought her spinning wheel, a Louet Victoria, over for me to try.  I'll admit I was quite intimidated by it at first, and watched her set it up with cautious optimism.  She gave me a brief tutorial, and told me to have fun - knowing full well that spinning is the kind of thing that each person just has to get a feel for.

Because it was early on a workday, I told myself I had to be somewhat disciplined, so I allowed myself an alternating schedule of 15 minutes of wheel time and 30 minutes of work.  After the first 15 minutes, I was a little frustrated and ready to walk away from the wheel.  After the second 15 minutes, it was going better, and I told Kelie that I was now motivated to finish my drop spindle project so that I could start the next braid on a wheel.  She asked me why I didn't just finish my current drop spindle project on the wheel, and I replied that I couldn't possibly get the fiber to look as good on the unpracticed wheel as it did from my spindle.  Yeah, right.

After the next 15 minutes of practice, I transferred the section of spun fiber off my spindle onto a wooly winder bobbin, and said goodbye to the spindle.  I recommenced work on the fiber spinning project I started last summer during Tour de Fleece, which had stalled out due to my waning interest in the drop spindle.  Between July 2011 and the magical day I tried the wheel, I had completed 2.5 oz of the 4 oz of fiber I purchased.  By 10pm that night, I finished the remaining 1.5 oz, and it looked every bit as good as my spindle-spun singles - and had a tighter spin to it.

The next day Kelie gave me a tutorial on plying, and I took to it with great resolve!  By 10pm that night, I had finished plying all my singles.  Final yardage tally:  484 yards!!!  I was hoping to get 400, so I was really please to have as much as I did. 

Ethereal Triangular Shawl (Rav: sarahboirin)
Yesterday I perused patterns, and decided to use the handspun yarn to make an Ethereal Triangular Shawl by Lakshmi Junega.  I think it's so pretty - and it requires around 430 yards, so it's perfect for my yarn.  To prep for cast on, I soaked my yarn, blotted out the excess water, and hung it to dry overnight to set the twist.  Today I cast it on, and I'm absolutely mesmerized by the way the colors are knitting together - it's going to be be-U-tiful!  I wasn't going to cast on until we go on vacation next month, but who was I kidding?

Needles' Travelling Socks
Also today, Kelie delivered more toes for me to work on!  This Travelling Sock KAL is just so much fun!  This round of socks belong to Needles, and they are looking really cool!  I've finished one of them - couldn't wait to start (I sure don't seem to have much willpower today, do I?)  I used the Gingerbread Rib pattern from the Vogue Knitting Ultimate Sock Book with Sweet Teal yarn, and I think this pair is looking super cute!  Kelie is the one who put the sparkly second section on, and really did a great job coordinating color with the original toe color.  I'll finish sock 2 this weekend and have them ready to ship to Penny in Canada on Tuesday.  As of today, she hasn't yet received the two pair I sent her previously.  Hopefully soon!

So it's Friday - almost 5 o'clock, and that means happy hour knitting in my book!  I'm trying some sugar free margarita mix...



  1. When the picture of your handspun popped up on my screen, I made a sort of gaspy-shreiky-squealy-gurgle sound that loosely translated means "IT MUST BE MINE!". Then I used the enbiggen feature. I can't even describe the noise I made then. When I read that it was yours, and yours alone, I sobbed. I don't know what I'll do when I see the finished shawl. It's sure to be gorgeous.

  2. Your handspun is gorgeous! Nicely done - can't wait to see what it decides to be.


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