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Topic: Ongoing spin-along! (or fiber stash busting event!)  (Read 15583 times)
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astormorray
I love looms.
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just spin the yarn.


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« Reply #90 on: March 22, 2011 08:41:07 PM »

I took a class, myself. I would recommend that if possible, some knitting stores will offer them, or you may have a local fiber arts guild. Sometimes they will rent wheels for a nominal amount. (and looms!)

The other things: predrafting! can't stress the importance of making sure your fiber is loose enough to spin. Drafting is what trips up most people when they are learning. if you tease your fiber apart first, you will totally save yourself much aggravation later. Even when you end up, like me, spending twice the time predrafting as you do actually spinning, the results are worth it!  It may also be worthwhile to start with something kinda slippery - like a superwash or alpaca - because drafting is going to be unfamiliar, and you don't want to fight with it (although, predrafting should take care of most sticking). Also, start with quality stuff! lots of people start with junky stuff thinking that they don't want to waste good material, and end up thinking that they hate spinning because it ain't easy to spin junk... and at least a 2-2.5 inch staple, or else you'll have more dropping.  The shorter the staple, the more twist you need to hold it together... so, when you're starting out, you want to make it easy for yourself.

Secondly, it helped in my case to have a medium to heavyweight spindle. In my class, our teacher provided spindles, but they were lightweight, and I couldn't get enough momentum to keep it spinning the right direction - it would start going backwards. I ended up making my own- both longer and heavier, and found it much easier to use.

uh, I guess that's a lot of advice. Wink
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LaughingLark
« Reply #91 on: March 23, 2011 06:27:40 AM »

I decided that the cop on my Little Meggie spindle was full enough, and made a small skein of it. I really did not enjoy spinning this wool. The grey and purple wools both have issues. They are all different lengths and some of the purple is short and lumpy. The grey is grab bag wool with bits of mohair that was really matted up, and the purple was bits left over after I used the better pieces of roving. I carded these two dubious wools together and hoped for the best. It can be spun, but to get the type of yarn I was going for, it was park and draft spinning all the way. The Little Meggie is good for supported spinning, but I'm still not crazy about her. It's a shame.  Sad

I'll go back to spinning this later this spring, or maybe after I get a Navajo spindle figured out. The Meggie just seems like she should be more efficient than she is. I think I will get though this wool faster on a Navajo spindle.

The twist has not been set yet, and this skein gets added to the pile of skeins I need to finish. I just ordered a salad spinner to get my skeins dry before I hang them up. I'll finish them once it gets here.
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jexxican
« Reply #92 on: March 23, 2011 07:06:04 AM »

I just ordered a salad spinner to get my skeins dry before I hang them up. I'll finish them once it gets here.  width=335 height=800]http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g116/LaughingLark/Wool%20and%20spinning%20projects/purpleandgreysingle.jpg

Even though it sucked to spin, that is a pretty skein.

Salad spinner is smart! I wonder if that would help with my fleece? My washer thinks it has to agitate before it drains and spins. Hm. something to think about, but I don't think with whole fleeces that way I am getting. Definitely food for thought... Thanks!

Oh, still no progress, though I did load my comb yesterday hoping to get some done. It's just sitting there looking forlorn. Sad
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"The perplexity of life arises from there being too many interesting things in it for us to be interested properly in any of them."
- G. K. Chesterton

A clean house is a sign of a wasted life.

It's much more fun, this growing down. -RIP Uncle Shelby-
k_cat
« Reply #93 on: March 23, 2011 07:34:53 AM »

Think I got the first (slight) sunburn of the year by doing something involving wool. Perfect combination! Grin

I used my mother's garden table for some dirty work today: I opened up some of the brown fleece's locks, shaking out dirt and removing straws and dead insects.
Example:
Turned THIS...


...into THIS.


Fluffy and a lot less dirty. I washed this fleece a few weeks ago, but only with cold water and some selfmade soap. There's still a lot of grease in it, but I like it that way. Don't know if I'm going to card this one yet.
I'd like to see this spun soon, so I might look for the drop spindle I left at my parents' house a few months ago. Not sure where it is, though. Probably should build a new one... Mmmpf. Or I'm just going to steel my mom's wheel... Hehe.
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LaughingLark
« Reply #94 on: March 23, 2011 10:18:12 AM »

Jexxican--here are a couple of sites about washing fleece with a salad spinner. When I do get local fleece this summer, I will need to wash it in small batches as I have the time. I have a few delicate, long and crimpy locks to clean when my spinner gets here. I may sew them into little pockets of tulle to protect them. I don't remember what breed if sheep they are, but they are nice. I thought the spinner would be great for wringing out my skeins. Some people even buy them to get the water out of hand washed wool socks.
http://www.owning-alpaca.com/washing-fleece.html

http://vickyth.wordpress.com/2011/02/22/looks-like-dead-mice-washing-wool-in-the-lock/

 k_cat--I love the color of that wool. I'm hoping I'll be able to get some brown wool to play with this summer. What breed of sheep is that? Smiley

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k_cat
« Reply #95 on: March 23, 2011 10:29:22 AM »

k_cat--I love the color of that wool. I'm hoping I'll be able to get some brown wool to play with this summer. What breed of sheep is that? Smiley
I don't know. The tenant who is using 3 of our meadows usually brings a big bag full of random fleeces at least once a year. I'm not sure HE knows the breed... Probably some kind of mix. (By the way, I found white spots in the fleece... Hehe.)
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k_cat
« Reply #96 on: March 23, 2011 03:37:54 PM »

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! Progress!
I carded part of the cleaned wool... A "small" bag full.


...and I had to try it. With a heavy drop spindle, just to see how the wool behaves, I made a 2-ply sample. (It's more than just this little bit. I just wrapped some around a small piece of kitchen paper, for contrast...)


This wool is probably best for outer garments or socks... Sturdy, not scratchy, but not too fine either. Not sure what I'll make with it. Either yarn for socks or weaving or something completely different. Cat toys? Because it still smells a lot like the sheep it came from. Wink
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astormorray
I love looms.
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Posts: 1290
Joined: 08-Jun-2005

just spin the yarn.


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« Reply #97 on: March 24, 2011 02:31:19 PM »

I just want to show off this roving:



I spun it up yesterday, and hoping to ply tonight!  I think it's so amazingly gorgeous!

It's from colorbug yarns on etsy... I'm getting some yarn from her soon as well.  Grin
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jexxican
« Reply #98 on: March 24, 2011 03:09:33 PM »

Astor, that is some color therapy right there. I bet that was fun to spin, just watching the colors blend!

So, we doing this again next month? I mean, it doesn't even have to be a "stash busting" event, just something where we all set goals and talk about fiber. I like this. I feel at home. I don't want to leave my new friends! Am I being silly?
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"The perplexity of life arises from there being too many interesting things in it for us to be interested properly in any of them."
- G. K. Chesterton

A clean house is a sign of a wasted life.

It's much more fun, this growing down. -RIP Uncle Shelby-
LaughingLark
« Reply #99 on: March 24, 2011 04:22:27 PM »

So, we doing this again next month? I mean, it doesn't even have to be a "stash busting" event, just something where we all set goals and talk about fiber. I like this. I feel at home. I don't want to leave my new friends! Am I being silly?

You're not being silly! I hope this will become a regular thing. I already have a goal in mind for next month. Smiley
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