Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Not just rose..

So, the rose wasn't the only thing I spun this past three weeks. Oh, no. In fact, after a bunch of the rose, I was getting pretty darned tired of dusky pink. And dark pink. And light pink. And pink-y brown.


So somewhere in there I conceived a desperate need for blue. I went by my LYS-dyers' place and picked up the most gorgeous blue/green/purple/gold tussah silk top you've ever seen.
Tour de Fleece - July 14th
And then a few days later I went back and bought the rest of it that she had (for 6 oz total). Since this was never in the original plan for spinning, I didn't really have any major drive to get it done. I started out spinning a very thin and even single and just working my way through it as a break. At the same time I was working on knitting a shawl and it came into my head that it would look amazing with a green border. At my Monday knitting group I approached my friend dyer and asked if she couldn't cook up a batch of green silk. Green, like the pretty fronds of plant in the vase beside her on the table. She took a sprig, tucked it behind her ear, and by Wednesday, I found GREEN waiting for me!

Tour de Fleece - July 16th
So the green became my second project of the Tour. But wait, you say, isn't the blue your second project? Well. Yes, and no. You see the green silk is finished. Two ounces spun in 385 yards of 2-ply, lace-weight tussah silk yarn. And it's already wound and being knit as well! (You'll get to see that later. Maybe Friday. I'm keeping it under wraps.)

Tour de Fleece - July 17th
The peacock blue/green/purple/gold was still being spun.
Tour de Fleece - July 18th

Side trip number two was getting back to a project I'd planned for the month, but sidelined for my Tour de Fleece projects. I spun up my Spindler's Group Challenge yarn. I had planned on this being my second attempt at a cabled yarn, but it just wasn't working for me, so I went with 3-ply instead.

Tour de Fleece - July 18th
I also took a side trip into supported-spindle spinning. Of course, I don't own a supported spindle. But I solved that problem! Channeling my inner MacGuyver, I dug out a bamboo skewer and a racquetball and constructed a perfectly serviceable supported spindle. I began to work on my long-draw techniques, so that I might feel confident enough to take the leap into spinning down fibers like cashmere.

Tour de Fleece - July 26th
I'm still working on the "peacock" silk. I'm trying to decide if I should ply it with itself, or find a coordinating wool to use as the second strand. At the moment I'm leaning towards wool, to give it a soft hand, loft and bounce.

As a final overview of this past month's efforts, and listed in order of spinning:
950 yards (+100 yards leftover silk single) of 2-ply rose in 3.8oz of tussah and 4oz of merino, (24-20 WPI)
55 yards of 3-ply “just for giggles” in 47g of random wool (didn’t measure WPI)
385 yards of 2-ply green in 2oz of tussah (22 WPI)
? yards of cotton “challenge” yarn on a bamboo skewer+racquetball. (Go MacGuyver!)
1200 yards of tussah silk single, waiting for its perfect mate (as yet undetermined)

950x2 + 100 + 55x3 + 385x2 + 1200 = 4135 yards or 2.35 miles.. approximately

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