Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Spinning continues, with dyeing in the offing

So I spun some more, then wound the product, a length of merino spun into a single, that's one ply,  onto my DIY niddy noddy, to make a hank. You can vary the size of hank by using different lengths of pvc piping, easy to add, since this whole thing comes apart without tools. You can cut lengths with a hacksaw.

In the course of winding onto the niddy noddy, which took all my powers of concentration and colorful language to get it all in the right direction and not crossing over, I noticed the bag of roving heaving up and down, and snorting and snoofling sounds coming from it.  

Duncan in there, tripping out on the roving, which has the same effect on him as catnip.  I hauled him out, drooling and glassy eyed, Duncan, not me, whereupon he staggered over to punch out Marigold.  She drew herself up to her full six pounds, half his size, and snarled you talkin to me??  and he discreetly withdrew and wove away to take a nap.

I did run into a beginner's problem in the winding in that in one place the yarn snapped, but I just put the end on the spindle, and spun  the broken ends together, and now you'd never know.
Close up to see the yarn a bit better

This yarn thickness and consistency is far from expert, but it's also far from where I was a while back, so I'm okay with it. That red bit is the leader yarn I used to start it on the spindle.

Washed it in fabric detergent meant for this sort of thing (Dharma Trading's version of Synthropol).  Rinsed, then had fun whacking it about.  You take the hank, now wet and tied here and there to keep it together, and whack it loudly on the floor a time or two, moving around it so it all gets hit.  This has something to do with setting the twist, forget exactly what. It's fun, though.

Then you hang the damp skein on a doorknob with a handy weight to hold it down, important to keep some tension there, otherwise it will all curl round on itself and be intractable.  The weight in this case is a large conch shell, which is working a treat.

When this is dry, giving it a day or two, I fancy using some of my natural dyes in the freezer to paint on and dye them with. I need to get them out to thaw, come to think of it.  I'll keep you updated on that as it goes.  I also plan to learn to ply using this yarn, which is now at least fine enough to try two ply, and see how that goes.

I will have to ply in the opposite direction from the way I spun, in order for it to work.  So since I usually spin counterclockwise, holding the roving in my left hand, and using right finger and thumb to spin the spindle, I will just switch hands, hold the threads in my right hand,  and use the left finger and thumb to spin the spindle, which will send it clockwise.  This is where mixed dominance comes in very handy.

At least, as always, that's the plan! And I got some interesting ideas on other kinds of roving, so now I'm awaiting a little shipment of Coopworth, which I'm told is easy to spin, which I will be glad of. Merino actually is okay, but it will be interesting to see how Coopworth compares.

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