Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Shetland Spinning Secret Hand Shake...

Does anyone want to let me in on it? I've finished my second 4 oz bobbin for Le Tour de Fleece challenge and while my spinning isn't TOTALLY crappy, the Shetland is proving to be Not So Easy. At All. It's not going to be lace weight although there are annoying spots that are trying to be...meaning I'm ending up with thinner spots in places than I like. Not so many nubs...but this has been truly challenging to spin evenly. I'm using a "semi-woolen" method, trying to draft forward...but it's just not coming to me the way I thought it might. What the's a CHALLENGE, right?

And I *am* halfway through the pound and the fiber is simply GORGEOUS and I adore Shetland, I truly do. Maybe because I'm trying to spin much finer than I normally do, it's more challenging (ya think???) But I find myself longing for some nice springy, forgiving Jacob at the moment. I just can't seem to pick up a good rhythm with this stuff! my own defense, the really fat parts in the photo are the ENDS of the singles. Really. But, as you can plainly see, not so even, eh? Not so lace-weight. I'll end up with fingering, I'm sure (I sure hope!) The good parts are that it's soft, and with the semi woolen a lot of glaring inconsistencies are going to blend away with plying (I'm an optimist!)

I've been thinking again about how to ply...there's a killer shawl in the new Vogue On the Go Knitting "Shawls" book and I want to make that! Not sure if that's feasible with the weight I'm going to end up with but there may still be hope! It's the same shawl that Vogue Knitting mag has as an exclusive/addition on their's Shawl 18 by Meg Swanson, which is in the Fall 2005 issue. The other shawls there are quite lovely too!

(Do I REALLY love the shawl or do I love the shawl because I think I'll look like that in the shawl? Ya gotta wonder...)

I'll be swatching and trying to go for it, I think, but perhaps more research for a pattern is necessary. Will I end up with a blanket instead of this shawl with my Shetland? do I ply for color? I'm thinking of plying the gray and white together for the border and the 2 browns together for the main part. Maybe a bit funky, but hey, I've always been a bit funky!

So, before work today I have to clean Frank's cage (dear old guinea pig!) and groom Phoebe (fiber factory English Angora who's a real hoot!), print some ball bands for the shop, call my doctor...when all I want to do is laze around on this gloomy, rainy morning. I love rainy days!


At 12:49 PM, Blogger Abigale said...

Hi Leah,

I have some shetland that I've been spinning a little bit of here and there, it was a fleece that I bought off e-bay, and I'm not tremendously experienced in dealing with whole fleeces. I wish I liked the whole process a bit better. My shetland is grey, with dark guard hairs, and just not very nice to spin. I carded the first batch that I have sampled on one of my spindles, but don't think I'd ever use it for anything. I'm thinking I'll try my combs for the next batch, and see if that helps.

I've also been thinking a lot about the low water immersion dyeing techniques and using acid dyes. I have some silk that I really want to dye - yarn and roving... I will definitely let you know if I get anything done with it. I'm thinking that throwing the dyes onto the moist silk, and then throwing boiling hot vinegar water on it, and then maybe zapping it in the microwave might be the way to go.

Anyway - have fun!! Abi

At 11:39 AM, Blogger Janice in GA said...

The Shetland that I'm spinning is a *dream* to spin. It's so easy, especially compared to some of the other stuff I've spun recently. It's just taking FOREVER to spin it laceweight.

I'm half-way through the spinning -- two colors done. But I still have to ply. :( I don't think I'm gonna be done by the end of the Tour de Fleece. :( :(

But I haven't given up hope. I have all day today to work on it! Maybe a miracle will happen!

At 4:54 AM, Blogger varun said...

good stuff!!Shawls and Scarves


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