Monday, December 8, 2008

Now THIS is more like it!

I am so loving this new yarn I've spun up - it looks EXACTLY the way I'd planned it - for once! I hope the photos show the rich and lovely color changes to this hand dyed Falkland top from Jennifer of Laughing Rat Studios. She called the colorway "Evening". Yes, I know...I get half my fiber from her - I can't help myself! I also just noticed that her Studio does NOT appear in my "Stuff I Can't Quit Buying" list (see sidebar)! So sorry, Jenn! That is now rectified! I guess I thought I'd gotten the link inserted everywhere, but apparently not.

I love how she chooses many different wools to work with, rather than just sticking with one type. I've gotten Merino, Shetland, Falkland & Finn from her (and probably others, as well), which allows me to find out the different characteristics of each type of wool. I find that I LOVE the Falkland for spinning worsted. It's so much like Blue-Faced Leicester (pronounced 'Lester', in case you wanted to know), that it is going to be one of my favorites - I can already tell. BFL is not always easy to find and, sometimes, darned expensive when you do! The Falkland fiber (similar to BFL and Shetland in length) is much longer than Merino, allowing for a more leisurely draft and a looser twist (if that's what you want). I didn't opt for that this time around, but were I spinning for a lace-weight shawl, you bet I'd want that for a nice, drape-y hand.

Isn't this stuff lovely, though? There are so many subtle, varying shades of browns, reds, teals and a bit of green, that I can hardly count them. I divided the top in half lengthwise and spun the first half, but couldn't wait to ply it, so I'm just now spinning the second half, and about 1/3 the way done with it. That is NOT the 'recommended' method for dealing with a project (can lead to very different twists between the plies), but so what... Its MY stuff and I just couldn't wait this time. Here's what it looked like on the bobbin:

Rather than merely hoping to keep the colors together by plying from 2 bobbins (this is always an iffy prospect when dealing with a many-colored top), I chose to spin a rather thin single and then Navajo-ply it. I wanted a worsted weight yarn with lots of twist in the ply - and it looks GREAT, compared to what I usually produce! I'm about 1/3rd the way through the second half of the split top, so maybe I'll be done tomorrow or the next day and can ply it up. I just wish I'd gotten a good 2 lbs (for a man's sweater!), as I'll only end up with around 360 to 380 yards, total. Darn it - not much after all that work, huh? Anyway, I am probably beating my drum a bit too hard, but I sure do like this stuff!


Laughingrat said...

Hm, Blogger ate my first comment. Wacky. Anyway, it looks great! You have mad spinning skillz, seems like you can spin finely and evenly pretty consistently. Me, I'm having Spinning Problems lately, partly brought on by the new arrangement of, well, everything, but mostly due to my refusal to get going and practice. Anyway, I am glad you enjoyed the fiber and that it's spinning up smoothly for you!

Delighted Hands said...

Go ahead and crow--it is beautiful!

Fairy Spun Fibers said...

Me?? "Mad spinning skillz"? You've got to be joking, Jenn! I've seen your spinning - it's better than mine by far, woman, but thank you for the vote of confidence. I could use it right about now! I love everything you've ever sent me - I just need time - LOTS of time! - to spin it all up.

Fairy Spun Fibers said...

Coming from you, Delighted, that is high praise, indeed! You forget - I've seen your work. :-) You and Jennifer (and almost everybody else!) are better spinners, but one day I hope I'll catch up!