Sunday, May 6, 2012

If at first you don't succeed, or

a study in contrasts. That was the theme of the weekend. I was going to title this post A study in contrasts at first, but it really is both about reworking plans and trying again as well as contrasts of different kinds.

Remember my first spindle spun yarn that was underplied? I ran it through adding more plying twist and I am happier with the result. Here it is on the bobbin after plying.
I skeined and finished it. As you can see, there is a lot of contrast in the thickness of the yarn throughout the skein. There is quite a bit of yardage.
 This was the first in my try, try, try again theme. It didn't work plying it the first time so I plied it again.

I also plied the Dorset-Hampshire Cross that was my Feb 2012 Fleece of the Quarter Club. This is a freshly spun single plied back on itself.  Not bad, eh?
And here it is, freshly washed and drying. There is more yardage than I expected here. All I can say is 'pretty'. I love the creamy natural color of the two skeins.

Here they are, hanging together in the shower.
 Now contrast that lovely color with this lovely color below. Also, contrast how easily that plying went with the plying I am about to describe. I was going to chain-ply some lovely Targhee that I had just finished spinning. But the singles kept breaking on me because they are so fine. After struggling with it yesterday, I decided to change tactics. This is my second try, try, try again theme for this weekend. 

I pulled out the quill attachment for the Hansen and a bunch of weaving bobbins I had bought after last fall's eSpinner retreat with Judith McKenzie. She had demonstrated using the quill to wind bobbins. Judith also recommends rewinding bobbins before plying as it redistributes the twist. She says twist is like a river, it flows up and down the fiber. I think this is a great analogy. Anyway, I had invested in the fixing because I wanted to try her methods. They came in handy to rescue the Targhee.

 There is the Hansen with the quill and a bobbin on it. An O-ring secures the bobbin on the quill. In front are some re-wound bobbins and a bunch of empties. There are only 2 empties right now. A Hansen bobbin holds a LOT of fiber.

 In the photo below, you can see the original bobbin with the singles on the kate and if you look at the picture carefully, you will see the single going from there to the weaving bobbin on the Hansen.
 It took a while and a whole lotta bobbins but the singles are all wound off onto the smaller bobbins. I am ready to do a real 3-ply. The kate is now all set up with the weaving bobbins. Aren't the colors gorgeous? This is the contrast with the natural creamy white. Bright, saturated jewel tones. Yum! I love both sorts of colors. Natural and rich, dyed colors. I even like pastels. In fact, I haven't met a color I didn't like.

 And last but not least, I got my MicroXL Trindle yesterday. It weighs about 4 gms. The two arm sets get added on. The lavender quartz arms on the left weigh 7.1 gms so I can get a spindle that weighs 11.1 gms or one that weighs 16 gms with the arms on the right. The green ones weigh 12 gms. I put the Spin-Off next to it so you can get an idea of the relative length of the MicroXL. It is a very portable spinning project.
Now back to plying....

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