December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

On/Off My Needles
Cast on new pr of toe-up socks for mom using stash yarn Knit Picks Comfy Fingering wt in the Merlin color way. Also footing Big Black Socks for Socks for Soldiers, and working on the Hermione socks for me, as well as the Shetland Pi shawl for mom.

Finished Objects - the green Austermann Step socks for mom.

On/Off My Spindle

Off - the super wash merino in the Treasure Chest color way. This was chain plied, and the first two skeins I've finished were sport wt yarn.  The other two skeins are drying and should also be sport weight.  I'll check the yardage when all is dry.

Treasure Chest closeup

On - for the SpinDoctor Breeds Challenge:

1) Falkland hand painted top from Crown Mountain Farms in the Purple Rain color way. This is a new breed for me, however if I didn't know it was Falkland, I'd have thought it was merino. At least it spins (drafts) just like the Treasure Chest merino I just finished. I'm powering through the spinning (worsted) and will chain ply it (because I need the practice - I have twist/overplying issues).

Falkland top

2) Corriedale from washed fleece.   This was six ounces of locks I got mid December from Country Wool to practice carding and combing, and the first non-commercially processed fiber I've worked with.  Very little VM.  The staple length is on average about three inches.  I've settled on carding.  I tried combing, but while it was long enough, it just felt too sproingy (a very technical term) for the combs.  Carded or combed it has a lot of neps and bumps and stuff, so I'm spinning semi-worsted from woolen prep (because I haven't got the hang of long draw yet) for a three-ply, which I'm hoping will cover the irregularities.  I think it's coming out fairly decent; what do you think? 

Corriedale 3ply

3) Romney from washed fleece. 
There's a lot more VM in this than I'm used to dealing with.  So I'm sorting through, hand picking what VM I can and making two piles: the clean enough to use right away, and what needs flicking first (I use dog slickers).  I tried combing to remove the VM, and while it did get rid of some, I needed to make so many passes to achieve it I was afraid I might damage the locks by overcombing.  Flicking seems to work better for the really VM laden locks and seems easier on the locks too. 
The fiber feels softer in the lock than it does when spun, but the finished two-ply feels softer than the singles.
I'm spinning semi-worsted from combed top and the carded comb waste. 
This is just a pic (and not a very good one at that - sorry) of the bag of fleece and some very uneven spinning.  I'm finding it much more difficult to keep my singles consistent when spinning from my prepped fiber than from the commercial top.   Just more things to learn and adapt to I guess.

Romney fleece (washed)

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