Saturday, February 2, 2013

A really boring week (or how to make the most of one bobbin)

The pollution here was higher than normal, but not as bad as Beijing. There was a cold front that brought pollution down from the north and then a stable weather system that kept it here for a few days. We've had rain the past few days, off and on, and the pollution is gone. But I have a sore throat and cough so I vegged out on Friday and yesterday.

I didn't get time to do anything fun this week. No spinning or knitting. In fact, I feel as if all I did was go to work and come home and go to bed. Oh well. I did pull the Hansen out last evening and have almost finished the Fiber Optic Blackberry to Raspberry gradient - well one half of it. I spun it from Raspberry to Blackberry.

I just realized that I have not given you the story of my one and only Hansen bobbin. I started off by spinning a single from an Into the Whirled Romney braid (bought at Rhinebeck 2011). I wanted to spin a relatively thick yarn (worsted or bulky?) to make a pair of mittens because I lost one of mine shortly after I came here. That went very quickly. And there was no sign of any more bobbins to come because they are all in my shipped luggage.

So I pulled out the next braid I had: a Sweet Grass Mountain Top Targhee. I had bought this when Woodland Woolworks went out of business. They had a sale on all their fibers and I bought a few different types to try out.

I split it and spun a single on top of the Romney. This one I spun from the fold for a medium weight, lofty yarn with no specific purpose. I wanted the colors to create a tweedy effect so that is why I spun it from the fold. OK, that one was done. No more bobbins in sight.
The top picture is the braid, the second is part-way through the single and the bottom one is the single when it was almost all spun up.

The next braid I pulled out was the Fiber Optic Blackberry to Raspberry gradient. I split it and started spinning it worsted - with a short forward draw. I am learning - slower spinning is the way to go. It makes the one-and-only bobbin last longer. But I am almost done with that.
This sequence is the braid in its entirety on top, then the split half all spread out, then the middle part of the single on the bobbin and finally, the last bits left - the current state. I didn't take a photo of the beginning because it blended with the previous colors and didn't stand out, especially because it was so much thinner than the Targhee.

Fortunately the Hansen bobbins are gigantic. They hold a lot of fiber. So after this is done, I am going to split the last of my braids - a Fiber Optic Autumn Harvest gradient and layer it on top of the Blackberry to Raspberry gradient. This one will also be spun worsted - short forward draw.
 When I get the other bobbins, I will replicate this bobbin - in the same order of fibers and same grist (I hope) and then ply them.
 If I find that I can't remember, then I will start at the top and spin the second single of the Autumn Harvest, ply it; spin the second single of the Blackberry to Raspberry and ply it; spin the second single of the Sweet Grass and ply it; and then lastly the Romney. This way I will be able to see the first single as I spin the second. Which way I go depends on how long it takes to get the other bobbins. Right now, the earliest it can be is the first week of March. Fingers are crossed that it happens then.

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