Tag Archives: handspun

Finished Handspun – Fiber Fancy Deep Thoughts

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Bamboo blends.  I keep trying to love them – I really do – but they don’t love me back.  I stuck with it though and finished this braid.

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The Process (Ravelry page)

  • 50% merino wool, 25% bamboo, 25% silk combed commercial top
  • Combed top from Fiber Fancy (it appears her Etsy store has been closed)
  • 4.1 ounces unspun; 3.8 ounces spun
  • 494 yards / 2080 yards per pound
  • 19 wraps per inch (light fingering)
  • Spun on my Hansen miniSpinner on the lace flyer, plied on the Woolee Winder

I tore the top into strips for predrafting, mostly because I prefer predrafting and wanted to make sure the bamboo and silk were opened up.  Also, some of the bamboo and silk bits were short and didn’t draft out smoothly.  I spun the singles together as a two ply.

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What Will it Grow Up to Be

Hmm.  I liked the fall colors initially but did not expect so much orange.  I’d like to tone it down a bit but I’m not looking to overdye this one.  Instead, I think I’m going to knit this yarn in stripes or block with an olive green yarn.  I think that combination would make a nice fall shawl or cowl.

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Finished Handspun – Woolgathering Purple/Pink/Blue

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Usually I’m pretty good as guessing how a single braid of fiber will spin up.  But not this time.  When I bought this fiber I thought what I have now determined is pink was more magenta.  And I was cool with that.  But its pink.  Oh so pink.

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The Process (Ravelry page)

  • 50% merino wool, 25% bamboo, 25% silk combed commercial top
  • 4.0 ounces unspun; 3.9 ounces spun
  • 952 yards / 3891 yards per pound
  • 34 wraps per inch (laceweight)
  • Spun on my Hansen miniSpinner on the lace flyer, plied on the Woolee Winder

I tore the top into strips for predrafting, mostly because I prefer predrafting and wanted to make sure the bamboo and silk were opened up.  I spun the singles together as a two ply.

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What Will it Grow Up to Be

The pink is bugging me.  For those of you who know me in real life you know I don’t do pink.  So, it’s going to get overdyed.  I’m first going to try a medium purple Jacquard acid dye.  In theory the dye will only adhere to the merino and silk and not the bamboo but my understanding is it may color the bamboo in a lighter shade.  I’m actually kind of excited about that – I think with the different fibers this should come out a nice tonal, much like a kettle dyed yarn.  If I’m not happy with the resulting yarn color I’ll move on to a dye type that will dye both protein and non-protein fibers.

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Ply Magazine article is out!

004Remember back last year when I was so excited my article proposal to Ply Magazine was accepted? And then I wrote the article, spun and knit the samples and shipped everything off to the editor? Well, the magazine issue with my article has been released.

Ply Magazine – The Leicester Issue – Spring 2015 is now available (link to the magazine’s website).

005My article is entitled “Finishing Face Off” (page 84) and is a comparison study of the different ways you can “finish” handspun, whether that be just washing, thwacking, snapping, etc.  Take a look to find out the surprising (to me) results and what they mean for your finishing process.

008P.S. And by plump, I mean 22 pounds.  She’s gained some weight while on steroids for medical reasons.  I call her mini-cow.

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Finished Handspun – Fiber Optic Siren Song

Handspun 3 of 3 for Spinzilla.   Eight ounces of Fiber Optic’s Siren Song in two different colors (four ounces each) This is part review/part what I spun.

Fiber Optic Collage

Review of Fiber Optic’s Siren Song Unspun

If you didn’t already know, I’m a bit of a Fiber Optic junkie.  And this is not the first time I’ve spun this stuff.  It comes as pencil roving and practically just drafts itself. I bought this in 2013 at The Fiber Event in Greencastle and knew I wanted to ply the two colors together.  The green was just labeled “Once in a Lifetime” and the purple was “Vineyard Batik.”  I started with 4 ounces of each so how I ended up with 8.2 ounces total is a bit of a mystery.  Siren Song is 70% superwash merino and 30% seacell.

The biggest draws of fibers from Fiber Optic are the nice bases and the amazing dye jobs.  The dyes saturate the fibers fully and you end up with a deep, rich color.  Her website is here but it is pretty tough to find some of the items in stock (like Siren Song Unspun).  Your best bet is to find it at a fiber festival or, in about a month, at her store in Ohio.

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Spinning Process

Rav page

Ounces: 8.2

Yards: 978

Weight: Light Fingering

I tore the pencil roving in half for predrafting, again for the ability to predraft before Spinzilla started and knew that would save me some time.  I spun each color as singles and then plied them together as a two-ply.  You’ll notice a bit of purple left over.  46 yard to be specific.  Apparently that how far off I was in keeping the singles even.

No ideas yet on what I’m going to make out of this.  It is going to have some serious drape so nothing fitted. Maybe a big, long cowl?

 

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Finished Handspun – Spinner’s Cottage

Handspun 2 of 3 for Spinzilla. A simply perfect merino from The Spinner’s Cottage. This is part review/part what I spun.
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Review of The Spinner’s Cottage Merino

I had never heard of this seller before but won a gift certificate on Ravelry to her shop. I wondered through her shop a bit, had some messages back and forth about what she might be adding. I finally settled on 4 ounces of merino in shades of blue and purple. It came in time for Spinzilla and I knew I wanted to spin it fine.
And wow was it amazing to spin. Just buttery soft and smooth. The finished yarn was much more lofty and squishy than I expected. I highly recommend this fiber and the shop was wonderful. It’s on Etsy here and is called The Spinner’s Cottage. She still has a few braids of the merino or merino and silk left and some beautiful Wensleydale and BFL braids.
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Spinning Process

Rav page

Ounces: 3.8

Yards: 410

Weight: Fingering

I tore the top into strips for predrafting, mostly because I could predraft before Spinzilla started and knew that would save me some time. I spun the singles together as a two ply. After plying, I had 410 yards in 3.8 ounces and it was a fingering weight yarn.

I would love to make a shawl out of this handspun but the 410 isn’t quite enough for most patterns. Does anyone have suggestions on what colors might go well with it?

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Finished Handspun – Blue and Purple Skeins

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What I Started With
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Remember that other batt I carded in the class I took? With purple, blue and a little sparkle? Since the colors and fibers were pretty uniform in this batt I tore the batt into strips to spin.  I then pulled it apart to pre-draft, grabbing all the colors.  I spun it, and the solid, medium purple merino from LunaBudKnits, as individual singles.

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I spun enough of the purple for the plying and then plied them together.  After plying I ended up with 200 yards of sport/dk weight-ish yarn in 2.6 ounces.  Not much.  So I went ahead and spun the rest of the purple and plied it on itself. Ended up with 100 yards in 0.9 ounces.

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I actually like the colors and the minimalist sparkle but am a bit disappointed with the yardage.  Even putting them together its only 300 yards which is enough for a small cowl but not a shawl as I originally planned.  So I may spin up something else to go with it.  Black maybe?

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Finished Handspun – Creepy Halloween

When you see the picture the title will make sense.  The colors remind me of Halloween and not exactly in a good way.

3 handspun (1280x853)

What I Started With

1a drum carded batt (876x1280)

1b purple (1280x853)

Remember that batt I carded in the class I took? With orange, purple and gray? Usually I tear batts into strips to spin, but since some of the colors would then only be in one strip I instead folded it over (lengthwise).  I then pulled it apart to pre-draft, grabbing all the colors.  I spun it, and the solid, dark purple merino from LunaBudKnits, as individual singles.

2 Singles (1280x853)

After plying I ended up 364 yards of sport weight-ish yarn in 4.1 ounces.  I got 15 wraps per inch after washing the skein but that doesn’t seem quiet right.  Odd.  Overall, I’m not crazy about the ending color.  In particular the gray/purple sections.  The adding of gray was probably not the best choice in retrospect. I’m not sure what, if anything, I’m going to make with it.  On to the next class batt!

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