Saturday, January 30, 2010

On the spinning tip

I have been spinning as well as knitting, but it's been a while since I've posted any pictures of the products of my labors. Here is the first half of the two-ply yarn from 11.5 oz of BFL from Briar Rose Fibers. (I couldn't find the exact one on her site, but this one is a pretty close match.) The rest of the singles are waiting to be plied together. This half took me about two hours to ply, and my back started to hurt, so I put the rest aside for later.

Next up is unknown yardage of singles from Fiber Optic Yarns, "Formerly Cranberry overdyed Besame Mucho, No. 26 'Days of Wine and Roses' superwash merino/nylon Foot Notes UNSPUN pencil roving". I have no idea what most of that title means, but it was a super soft and wonderful spin. As you can see from the Etsy listing, the colors were beautifully varied, yet the color after spinning ended up remarkably homogenous, though perhaps with a depth it wouldn't have had with a single color roving. Also, I think this is the first time I've spun pencil roving (although I have a bunch of it, undyed, in my stash) and it certainly makes the process easier - no pesky predrafting needed! It feels a little like cheating. I always have to remind myself that I am not getting graded on things.

I wound it into a cake because I had run out of bobbins and wanted to start plying today. I was considering using it for a 2-ply, although it is quite nice as a singles, I realized after winding it. But it could even go bigger, into a cable-plied 4-ply yarn, because the color is so nice. It's not as pink as this picture makes it look; it's really a deep, intense, cherry red. Or maybe cranberry, like the name of the roving.

Below is 2-ply spun from some gorgeous roving from Pigeonroof Studios. I was a huge fan of P.S. for a really long time and have raved about her skills as a colorist in this blog before. However, I'm kind of disappointed in the direction she has gone of late. She has a cool new methodology she seems to have invented for applying dye to yarn, and within what she calls The Luminosity Project she has been selling beautiful yarns in lots of deep and complex what you might call "anti-dyelots." However, the dye work in the roving she has been selling alongside those yarns does not seem to have the same depth and complexity, but instead seems kind of anemic and faint hearted. I have the RSS feed from her store in my reader and avidly scroll through the pictures whenever I see there are new listings, but I haven't felt the old craven greed to have something from her in a long time. So when I saw this, 4.2 oz of BOMBAY Blue-Faced Leicester/silk roving, I snapped it up. I spun it into this:

Next up, probably, is 'BLACK COFFEE' superwash merino roving, also from Fiber Optic Yarns. It's a grand mix of browns, containing black and gray and green and blue and purple overtones. The name alone makes me happy. I am looking forward to spinning it!

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My LYS, Stix-n-Stitches in Montclair, is having a yarn swap this weekend. I participated last June when they had one, but on that occasion I only brought commercial yarns from my stash. It occurred to me this time that maybe I could bring some of my own handspun. I somewhat timidly asked the owner, Sheila Handelsman, and to my surprise she was happy to let me do so. When I brought it in last night, I received the nicest reception to all the yarns from both Sheila and Patty, another staff member there. In fact Sheila bought some of it on the spot, which made me very happy. It was tremendously gratifying. Usually, almost nobody sees my yarns other than myself and MHA; I sometimes feel like I'm in a vacuum out here in the wilds of NJ, making my yarn and then just putting in a huge Tupperware storage container in my studio!

In fact, Sheila put my handspun yarns in a special basket, separate from the yarn swap, with specially attentive focus on the presentation. She said that she thought we might work out something going forward where I could sell it on consignment. She pointed out some bags she sells there; every sale of one of those, she gets a piece of the price and the seller gets the rest. I would be delighted to set up an arrangement like that, so I hope that what I have brought over so far sells well!

1 comment:

Dusty Dudley said...

Very cool :-) and good luck with the consignment thing: very exciting! I've not tried spinning or any of that, and while it is a fantasy of mine to do that someday, it's unlikely I'll ever have time. I'll just have to live that dream vicariously through your blog, heheh.