Monday, February 26, 2007

Spinning Q & A

I felt the need to answer a few questions put forth in the comments recently.

In response to Sheepish Annie, I should clarify that this was my first attempt at plying fine singles with a spindle. My early attempts at spindling were much thicker and were knit up either as singles or loosely plied, then knit up as samples. I spent a lot of time working up to this level of control and the early attempts were all pre-blog.

Also, Livnletlrn, I did spindle spin all this yarn but I didn't actually spin these singles over the past weekend. These were some singles I'd had languishing in my stash for a year or so, because I couldn't figure out how to divide them evenly to ply them. It wasn't until I read an article in Fiber Femmes that I figured out how to make the spindle plying work. It was my own dullness that kept me from figuring out that I could use my ball winder to make a center-pull ball. Then I could pull from both the center and the outside at the same time, making sure to use all the single without having to try and divide the single into two even balls first. There were a few snarls toward the end of the process but, overall, it worked pretty smoothly.

As of now, Guinifer, I don't have a project in mind, since my singles are still all ending up different sizes. I bought this wool on the advice of the lady who taught me to spindle spin. It has a nice, grippy texture, making it pretty easy to draft. I also have it in a much lighter color, so I can mix the two together, if I want. Right now, I'm just getting the hang of things. I bought that much because I have 4 kids who all wanted to spin, too, so I figured we'd all get to use it. They kind of got bored with spindling, so I guess I'll have plenty to make whatever my little heart desires, IF I can ever get it all spun. AND I can get a consistent WPI.

I would love to get a wheel, someday, but it's just not in the budget right now. In the meantime, I enjoy spindling, now that I'm back at it again.

On the knitting front, in lieu of finishing Samus as my third Resolution UFO, I've resurrected Shifting Sands instead and am nearly done. I am a few inches shy of 60 inches and am nearly at the end of a skein, so I decided to just knit to the end of the skein and block it to 60". Although everyone else I've seen post about this scarf says that they've had no rolling problems, my scarf is rolling pretty dramatically, so it will need some rather stern blocking. The yarn is also pretty rough and scratchy, so I'm going to treat it with some fabric softener before gifting it. I know it's not kosher to use fabric softener on wool blends but this yarn needs something to make it a bit more bearable against the skin.

No decisions on the next sock pattern. I've a mermaid costume to finish for DD#2's birthday and the stealth project going, so I'm going to let the sock pattern kind of stew in my mind a little while.

On the hockey front, the boys lost their last regular season game. It was a heart breaker because they were even up until the third period, when a couple of penalties cost us some goals and busted the game wide open for the other team. At full strength, the teams were evenly matched but short-handed, we just couldn't hold them. That's where playing a clean game can make or break a team and we paid the price for getting called for late penalties.

Their first playoff game is on Saturday. This is a single elimination tournament, so if they lose, the season is over. However, he is already placed on a spring hockey team, so he'll be starting up again in a few weeks. So the cycle continues, win or lose. Mentally and emotionally, I'm ready to move on to the next season. One of the advantages of being a hockey mom for so many years - a touch more detachment at the end of the season. There is always another season, another team, another tournament, another playoff . . .


Sheepish Annie said...

I still say that you did an amazing job on the spindling! I'm really getting back into the spindling and am just fascinated by the yarn that can come off such a simple tool.

I've done the fabric softener thing on yarn and on washed fleeces to soften them up. Other people have recommended hair conditioner to me as well. I think it's perfectly acceptable!

Guinifer said...

Well, I'm sure hockeyboy has learned to move on as well, with your good example! We have on our last game on the 10th, then we move on to Lacrosse. We are doing a week long camp this summer tho', and then next year we are in PeeWees.