And now for a crafty post!
Some time ago I got myself a “real” spindle! I’m very happy with it. Spins like a charm, although I think for the amounts I like to spin I’ll need to get a bigger monster some day. (i got it here).
Another thing was a spindle bag, but that wasn’t such a good choice. The spindle barely fits in there, not to mention wanting to put some roving in with it as well. Barely enough for one day’s of spinning in there. Oh well. The seller was kind enough to provide a sample of her own blend of colorful roving - this one. I loved it, and even though it was only 10g, I plied it with natural creamy wool and crocheted up a little bird for my grandma. I forgot to take a pic, but might still have a chance when I visit her.
Stuff not in pictures - first batch of fiber spun on the spindle was very nice and even. Wonderful singles. Unfortunately I’m still not too good at managing balls while plying, so they kept breaking. I had to fix them up all the time, twisting, tying knots. It came out so bad I thought it won’t hurt to ply it again, And I did my first four ply :) This time it didn’t break, obviously. It’s holding up pretty good. I also wanted to try natural dyes this year, and dunked it into a jar full of red cabbage juice. It sat there for three days but ended up looking like a floor rag. So… I put it into a chemical dye I bought last year, to get a deep pine needle/sea green color. Unfortunately I can’t rinse it out. I rinsed it for three days, in different water/vinegar solutions and it’s still rubbing off green on my fingers. Hopefully it won’t matter in the end, because I’m knitting it into panels that will cover a polartec jacket, for extra cold autumns/winters - I don’t think I’ll be sitting on light surfaces in that…?
I finished the pouf :) Yesterday evening. And since I already have the needles (a couple of minutes spent on sanding some twigs), I’ve started on a second pouf. This one will be from tshirt yarn, as I seem to have used up a vast majority of my store bought yarn stash for the first one. Somehow there isn’t much more storage room. Meh. I doubt I have enough tshirt yarn anyway, will have to ask around, maybe sister has some clothes she needs to dispose of.
And my first piece of practice weaving on the backstrap loom. If anyone could explain this to me I’d be much obliged… is it because of the uneven tension, or what?
You guys, I’m doing it! I used t shirt yarn to see if it will twist - it does! So I guess it wasn’t my inept plying. I might need to make/get a smaller needle, I don’t think this size will work well with thinner yarn? Judging by my efforts so far. Although I like this one a lot, I made it from this artsy clay thing that feels a bit like wood/paper after it dries.
Now to recreate these lovely chains in actual yarn :/ Also, here’s two pictures because I can’t tell which side is the right one.
anyone out there know anything about nalbinding? i’m having a hard time grasping the basic Oslo stitch. I tried with a chunkier yarn, to maybe see the shapes better, and it seemed to work, except instead of having a flat chain I’m getting a twisty-spiral one. Could it be because the yarn is handspun by me and probably very unbalanced? Or does it always spiral before you join the chain ends?
Just for color comparison - sanded dry, wet (between sandings), and oiled stick.
Check it! Hair sticks! I can’t wear them myself, hair way too short, but I guess I can always make some for sale, or as presents. For now I’m just experimenting. Since I can’t walk around much for now I just sit on the balcony with a knife and some sandpaper and there you are.
The green one is 20.7cm. I dyed it with Letraset Promarkers and coated it in clear nail polish. I wonder how much moisture it had inside and how that’s going to affect the varnish. For now I see I’ll have to put more coats (can wood drink up varnish??) - there are still places where hair could catch.
The other one is 20cm plus 2.5cm provided by the ivory and turquoise glass beads. There is a loop at the end to attach dangleys, should anyone wish to. It is not lacquered because there are no snags. It’s the original surface of the stick, I didn’t have to cut through any fibers anywhere (compared to the other one, which actually was a much fatter stick originally and I cut off layers from all around it). So I just polished it with sandpaper and applied quite a few layers of coconut oil.
So far I’m enjoying myself. And as autumn and winter set in, I can exchange found wood for some store bought dowels, I suppose. With cured wood I guess you could do just about anything :)
Well, this is how it came out. I was sort of expecting more of a gradient? But the fibers didn’t soak anything up, the color’s just cut off at the water level. The other part remained its natural color until I started bathing it to rinse out excess dye and set the color in. Two days of rinsing o_O and the white turned to this grayish-violet. Plus some felting happened. The strands are floofier and fuzzy. I might at some point dye the whole thing again, to get an even color, don’t know yet.
The sun is out! Look at that dye stewing. I wonder how it turns out, if the fibers soak up the dye forming a gradient or smth?
Also, this always happens, I don’t know how to prevent it. Probably should have shown you on a different background. Near the end of plying, my center pull balls just twist up inside somehow and form a knot. This time it was a ball from the turkish spindle, so it was quite loose and this happened at the very end. But previously, with nostepinne balls, I had this happen in the middle of plying, leaving me with a knot of unusable singles, half of my spinning wasted.
Is there any way to prevent this? This time around both balls were in a box with the yarn coming out through a hole. The other end of the yarn was securely wrapped around the ball, so as not to tangle up with the end I was using. I don’t know what else I could do.
Yesss! I finished this before yesterday, spinning for a couple of hours straight well into the evening. The last half hour I had to get off my healthy foot and spread the weight evenly between the two.
Anyway! Proud. Around 127m (although I could have counted some loops twice). It’s quite fine and very even! At least for a fourth attempt ever. I wonder how it will look after it gets out of the dye bath (they usually look more fluffy?). Just my luck, the sun decided to not come out today, might keep it in there for a day longer if this weather keeps up.
For the next spinning project I’ll try making a spindle like kybookbear did, just with even thinner skewers. These shorter arms might even allow me to use it as a support spindle, as recommended by aquamarinespinnerlover. With the one I had before I don’t think I could find a sufficiently large bowl/shell. Also - it’s a new technique to learn, what with the 45 degree angle of the thread and such. So I don’t know when I’ll be getting to that.
Aww, look how cute it is!
This is what it looks like after a couple of hours of work. My problem is - it’s too heavy for the type of fine yarn I’d like… What to do??
a) Try to make a smaller one? For thin yarn?
b) Make smaller batches? Have a couple of balls of singles and then ply them? Or ply each little ball separately? And tie them all together in the end? Bleh.
c) Spin fatter? And what, continue spinning fatter and fatter as it gets heavier?
I am so out of my depth here.
On the upside, I no longer park and draft, just do it all in the air, although hitching is still a problem spot.
Previous spinning results:
The purple one was my first ever, that’s why it’s so uneven.
The light green was second, still uneven but longer, more patience with the spindle.
The dark one is freshest. There was at least twice that much singles left in my center pull ball, but the outer wrappings slid off the ball, and more came out from the middle than it should have, and they tangled up together :/ Now I am anxious to try this type of plying again… but maybe the turkish spindle gives a better ball than I would have achieved by hand (or nostepinne).
All are a result of using store bought dyes, but instead of boiling and such, I just kept them in a jar in the sun for around three days each. Pretty good! The darkest one still needs a vinegar bath, though. So I don’t know what the end color will be. So far it’s a deep foresty green slash stormy sea turquoise.
Meanwhile, I’ve made myself a turkish spindle :) It works! Even better than the top whorl one I made previously. Maybe because the card stock is much heavier, helps it spin. Although I would still recommend a top whorl (with a hook) for beginners.
I’m just wondering, maybe someone can help me out here - the turkish spindle automatically gives you a ball, which is great for plying. But once you’ve plied, and want to finish the thread, give it baths/dye it, wouldn’t you have to skein it? So maybe plying should be done on a different type of spindle? Or is skeining from a ball easier?