Friday, September 26, 2008

A Long Week

It has been a really long week for way too many reasons. And I get the feeling that I really haven’t done much with my time, either. That’s not really the case, it just feels that way.

The September/October issue of Piecework came the other day. I just subscribed recently, in case you think I got it terribly late. Anyway, on page 17, there is a tinted picture of some Norwegian immigrant women knitting, spinning, and carding in the 1890‘s. What really interested me was the red headed girl in the floor. She looks just like my youngest. Her hair lays the same and the nose even looks the same. It isn’t just the red hair. Amazing and weird all at once.

I haven’t gotten my spindle out yet. I did find a couple spindling groups on yahoo and joined to see what I could learn. Instead, I got out my watercolors and started painting again. I’m thinking about trying oil colors, but there is so much stuff you have to have to do oils. Watercolor cleanup is SO easy. The watercolor painting isn’t so easy. One mistake with the brush and you might be starting all over with new paper. Fixing an oops isn’t always easy. I’ve been painting some fun things for my kids’ bedroom.

Back to the spindle, I read one time that starting out with merino can be really hard. I looked up some spindle starter kits and most of them with BFL (blue faced Leicester) roving. I do have some BFL, but I was hoping to save it for when I know what I am doing and could actually make some gloves or socks with it. It is gorgeous dyed stuff that I bought when I first got my spindle. My problem is definitely drafting. The merino seems difficult to learn with. There were a bunch of fibers with the spindle, maybe I ought to look and see what they are.

3 comments:

The A.D.D. Knitter said...

Wow, I know less than nothing about spinning but my youngest daughter is desperate to leanrn!!

Rebecca said...

The pattern for the baby tunic was the Toddler Tunic by Staci Perry. It's a free pattern on http://www.verypink.com/patterns.htm

What I notice about a lot of merion fiber I buy is that it is usually in roving form. This tends to already felt the fibers together a bit and make it more difficult to draft. If it's dyed that will also affect the fiber and how well it drafts. If you have some fiber that is combed or carded in a batt or such, that may be easier. Pick it apart with your fingers and really get it thin. Then stretch it lengthwise for your drafting so that you have kind of a thin, narrow bit of fiber. Then pinch your lead yarn at the top (use a single ply yarn to get started), start your spindle spinning clockwise, and lay your fiber on the top of your lead yarn and then slowly move your pinch up. Don't know if that helps; spindle spinning seems to require lots of pre-drafting.

Probably Jane said...

Aha! Another new spindler - I have to admit I play with my spindle more than my wheel these days.

I learned with Shetland fibre as it's a bit 'sticky' and doesn't escape like that pesky merino - I then moved on to BFL, then saw all the pretty colours and you can guess the rest...

I'm sure you and your spindle will get on just fine soon.