Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Spindlers July Challenge

I decided to take the July theme, Adventures & Discoveries, as an invitation to challenge myself to use the same fiber and spindle to experiment with making different kinds of yarn. I have plenty of variegated grey mill ends wool for this challenge. My “default” yarn seems to be emerging as a light fingering weight 2-ply yarn, which I really love, but I don’t want to fall into a rut with my spinning. Challenge is good for the brain and the fingers!

My materials:

I purchased the fiber from Detta, and the spindle comes from zebisis.

I spun three different kinds of singles - very thin with high twist, thick with low twist, and I tried thick-and-thin drafting, too. Here is a close-up of the different singles texture:

I decided that I liked the thicker single as it was, as well as the thick-and-thin single. I plied the thin single in two different ways - first in a 2-ply and then I tried Navajo (or chain) plying it for a 3-ply. The finished yarns:

So, what discoveries did I make with this challenge? I discovered that I really need to practice Navajo plying, because wow, it's hard to smoothly handle the yarn and keep the spindle turning during plying. I discovered that I have a pretty nice "default" yarn. And lastly, I discovered that I really like making a thicker, low-twist single yarn. It's very soft and it doesn't take much time to create a lot of yarn!

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