I have been spinning since March . . . not all that long. But I have started to produce some actual yarn. I shouldn’t sound so surprised, I guess. But, at first, I guess I really didn’t think of it as “real yarn,” more like “practice yarn” or just “some stuff I made before I made real yarn.”
But today, I pulled out all five hanks (big and small, scruffy and twisted), some made with roving, some made with dyed top, some with the washed Corriedale, and the last batch: two hanks of yarn I designed from the start.
The last batch (on the far right) is, by far, the best yet. This was the first raw–>finished 2-ply I have created and at each step, I felt like I was able to make conscious choices about what I was doing and why. Now, this is not to say, I am completely able to understand how my choices affected the final product; but, that will come with time.
The most recent yarn began it’s life as the Corriedale fleece I have posted about already. I took the scrappy bits from the fleece and turned them into batts with the DIY drum carder. I really liked the blue-ish batt I made as an experiment in blending, so I tried to replicate it and did so using a (gulp) scale to try to keep things even between the batts (I made 10 total).
I spun five batts each onto each bobbin and then plied them together onto a third bobbin. I was able to create two hanks from about 5 oz of wool. One of the best plying videos I’ve found was called “Plying Yarn for Balance” and it provided some true instruction on the Hows and Whys of plying–and not simply twisting–two singles together. And all of the advice worked! My 2-ply came out balanced each time–and I *almost* knew why that was the case 🙂
Here are some process photos of the yarn before and after washing.
I really liked the color of the batts and the singles; I am less crazy about the color and luster of the final 2-ply, but this is something to figure out and learn from. I was reading an older issue of Spin-Off this morning (all about color!) and learned that one can over-blend batts and that sometimes this muddies the color. Here, I think the muddying happened in the plying. I said I would never dye yarn . . . but I think that’s the next step. In the meantime, I am excited about the prospect of not just making “stuff” or “yarn-ish stuff on the way to yarn”. Nope, I think this counts as actual yarn. Now, what to knit it into . . .
Ohhhh, and stay tuned for a giveaway on Thursday!!!!